Hello, Friends:

Welcome to the Freire Schools! Every year since 2006, we’ve taken time in the spring to present the Bridge to Wisdom award to extraordinary people who embody the words of our namesake, Paulo Freire: “education is an act of love and, thus an act of courage.” 

We hope you will join us on Monday, June 18, 2018 for Summer Uptown, a new student maker faire honoring the late Stephen M. Goodman, Esq., his wife Janis Goodman, and their family. We are proud to honor Steve Goodman with the Bridge to Wisdom award and to thank all past Bridge to Wisdom honorees for their dedication to today’s children – tomorrow’s leadership.

We founded our first school in Center City 19 years ago with the goal of engaging Philly kids directly in their education, nurturing leadership, citizenship, and creativity. An experiment that began with 100 students, the Freire Schools now serve 2,000 students and over 150 faculty and staff across four campuses in two cities.

As our model grows, our needs grow. Events like Summer Uptown do more than celebrate our year, they provide funding so that our students can get their social-emotional needs met, excel academically, and participate meaningfully in their environment, from the halls of their school to college and beyond. 

The demographic of Freire Schools is predominantly students of color and economically disadvantage kids who grow up with multiple challenges. I can say from almost 20 years of working with Freire students: every single kid is brilliant when given the chance to shine. 

At Freire, students build their core academic skills through hands-on, integrated programming in technology and the arts. In their courses, on field experiences, and after school — our kids are building, planning, experimenting. On June 18, you’ll see firsthand the ways in which our students and their creative partners transform their communities, and your jaw will drop.

If you are new to Freire, I have a few invitations for you. Read what’s here, and please come for a visit to one of our vibrant learning communities. Whether in Philly or Wilmington, at our middle schools or high schools, we’ll welcome you with open arms. And, we hope you can join us on June 18 to honor our friend Steve Goodman, a glowing example of entrepreneurship, creativity, and philanthropy.

We are so proud he believed in us, and we’re excited to salute all of the creators, explorers, and visionaries who make up our network. We need such exceptional champions for these future leaders—we need you. 

We thank the Goodman family, our past Bridge to Wisdom honorees, our board, our faculty, and, most importantly, our students. 

Thank you for supporting creativity and hope in the next generation.


See you this summer!

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Kelly Davenport, EdD

Founder/CEO, Freire Schools & Freire Foundation