Summer Leadership Academy at Harllee

Summer Leadership Academy at Harllee “Our Vision is to create a new and exciting Summer Leadership Academy @ Harllee for youth, as we strategically begin to foster a community transformation, ultimately leaving a major impact on this Oak Cliff community called the Bottoms.” - The SLA

Across the U.S., many public schools are closing due to budget cuts and a lack of core student populations in certain areas. Last month, Chicago announced a plan to close and consolidate 50 schools; Philadelphia has voted to close 23; and Tucson plans to close 11 schools during the 2013-2014 school year. Unfortunately, the list goes on. In 2012, eleven elementary and middle schools were closed in Dallas. The Summer Leadership Academy @Harllee has formed from an idea to bring needed programming and resources to neighborhoods by developing a framework to revitalize unoccupied buildings. Viewing the recent school consolidations as an opportunity for these facilities to continue to serve their communities, the base goal of the SLA is to bring new life and amenities to the neighborhood by providing communities with strong cores of social, economic and environmental infrastructure to foster positive growth and support. Simultaneously, we seek to preserve the infrastructure of the school to meet future educational needs.

Mission: The Summer Leadership Academy team is comprised of the community’s local church, a non-profit interest group formed from the church specifically for the revitalization of the neighborhood, and several other organizations including the following: non-profit specialists in inner city youth, non-profit specialists in community involvement, non-profit architects, educators working pro-bono, architects working pro-bono, real estate professionals working pro bono, individuals from the Citiy’s Parks and Rec Department, and individuals from the City’s Housing Department. The SLA will take place in the closed Harllee Elementary School in the 10th Street/Bottoms neighborhood. It aims to provide 7th – 10th graders with life skills and leadership training during the summer months via two separate 2-week long sessions. By reaching out to these underserved children, the program hopes to directly enrich the student’s lives, and in turn to have the benefit spread toward the betterment of the surrounding community. The SLA will address subjects such as career awareness, character development, leadership, life skills, college preparedness & community service involvement. This is an annual event that also serves as the first step in creating a proven process for reusing closed-down schools in Dallas, as well as around the nation, for community betterment.

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Summer Leadership Academy at Harllee's cover photo
06/20/2013

Summer Leadership Academy at Harllee's cover photo

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