The East Valley Institute of Technology (EVIT) and Heritage Academy brought together over 60 (state and local) leaders supporting foster youth in November to kickoff an innovative new school with the goal to improve school outcomes. Foster youth have the lowest rates of high school graduation in the state of Arizona, and studies show that adding technical training to a student’s high school curriculum increases the chances of graduation by over 80%.
The school, named Paul Revere Academy, is the first ever high school of its kind, combining academic programming from a charter school with the offerings from a district technical school, all on the same campus. The kickoff was hosted at EVITs main campus in Mesa on Friday, October 21, 2022 and included addresses from Dr. Chad Wilson, EVIT’s Superintendent, a foster youth currently thriving in EVIT’s Construction Technologies program, and Mr. Jared Taylor, the Chairman/CEO of the Heritage Academy Schools.
In attendance were administrators, teachers, and students from EVIT and Heritage Academy, as well as representatives from the Arizona Department of Education, the Arizona Department of Child Safety, Arizona State University, the City of Mesa’s Chamber of Commerce, various foster care organizations, and numerous other organizations with an interest in supporting foster youth, and the expansion of technical education as part of available high school curriculum opportunities.
“Education is simply organized love,” said Jared Taylor, Chairman. “There are many great entities trying to provide services to youth in the foster system separately. Paul Revere Academy will put the best of these entities together to give these youth a sense of belonging, independence, and greater chance of living the American dream.”
Beverlee Kroll, a state coordinator with DCS shared, “Paul Revere Academy’s partnership with the East Valley Institute of Technology (EVIT) provides a unique opportunity for students to gain a high school diploma and a vocational certificate on a single campus. Paul Revere is committed to removing barriers to success for young people experiencing foster care through the provision of on-campus supportive services and transportation when the young person experiences a change in their living arrangement. Experiencing high school with the same peers across all four years affords students the opportunity to build lifelong friendships and positive connections with caring adults, enhancing their overall well-being as they transition to adulthood.”
Paul Revere Academy will be located on EVIT’s main campus in Mesa, and will open its doors to welcome students in July, 2023. While enrollment priority will be given to youth in the foster program in Maricopa county, as a public charter school it will be an option for all youth interested in combining technical education with their academic high school experience.
Heritage Academy is known as a high-performing charter school in Arizona, ranked as #1 Teachers in Arizona for multiple years.
If you are interested in enrolling a 9-12th grader at this innovative school, please visit paulrevere.tech. To make a donation toward Paul Revere’s “No obstacle fund” for these youth as they go through high school, please visit us at PaulRevere.tech/donate