Be safe. Be responsible. Be respectful. This is the motto students will hear when they enter the South Shore Fine Arts Academy (SSFAA) for the first time in September 2009. SSFAA is a new performance elementary school that will build on the successes of the South Loop School, 1212 S. Plymouth Ct., for improving students' outcomes. SSFAA will be at a location yet to be determined in Chicago's South Shore community.
Since 2002, the percentage of students who meet or exceed standards on the Illinois Standards Achievement Test (ISAT) at South Loop School has increased from 34% to 85.5%. SSFAA will build on successes like this by using key elements from the South Loop School model. Following this model, SSFAA will:
- Use student data to make ongoing adjustments to instructional practices
- Offer high quality after school programming for students and their families
- Have a well integrated curriculum infused with fine arts
- Encourage and stress the importance of parental involvement
To support its fine arts focus, SSFAA anticipates partnerships with the following organizations: Lookingglass Theater, Art Teachers in Residence (A.R.T.), Reading in Motion, Chicago Jazz Philharmonic, The Field Museum, Fulcrumpoint, The Art Institute of Chicago, Merit Music, Lill Street, Barrel of Monkeys, Opera for All, and ChiArts High School.
SSFAA will have grades K-2 in the first school year and will add a grade each school year until it reaches grades K-8. SSFAA will also have a preschool program for students who are potty-trained and turn three on or before September 1, 2009. Download an application to apply to SSFAA.
The new SSFAA is a part of Renaissance 2010, Mayor Daley's initiative to open 100 new high-quality public schools by the year 2010. By replicating the successful school model found at the South Loop School, SSFAA hopes to increase the number of quality school options for Chicago's youth.
To learn more about the South Shore Fine Arts Academy and other new school options available in the Chicago Public Schools, make sure to attend the New Schools EXPO on Saturday, January 31. The EXPO will take place at Soldier Field (indoors) from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. and will give families the chance to learn about the new school options across the city.