LeBron James Family Foundation helps launch a new public school in Akron, Ohio.
LeBron James is a champion on the court. There’s no denying that as he’s won 2 NBA titles with the Miami Heat and 1 with the Cleveland Cavaliers. Off the court, there may not be a more community minded athlete than James. The LeBron James Family Foundation has long been a standard of excellence – he pledged to fund the education for 40 students at the University of Akron and has been a pillar in the community.
Never one to settle, James and his foundation have identified their next major initiative: the I Promise School. James, his foundation, and the Akron Public Schools have created a new public school aimed at educating students who are at-risk in reading and need academic support in the most critical years.
According to USA Today, James said, “This school is so important to me because our vision is to create a place for the kids in Akron who need it most – those who could fall through the cracks if we don’t do something. We’ve learned over the years what works and what motivates them, and now we can bring all of that together in one place along with the right resources and experts. If we get to them early enough, we can hopefully keep them on the right track to a bigger and brighter future for themselves and their families.”
Initially, the school will house third and fourth grade students; by 2022, the school will be open to students in grades one through eight. James has stepped up to the plate in a major way. He has become a bridge for at-risk children to provide resources for their success. This school will help teach children at a formative age and provide the proper education for future success.
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Read how Figure Skating in Harlem, Inc. won Beyond Sport’s Sport For Education Award.
Figure Skating in Harlem, Inc. has won Beyond Sport’s Sport For Education Award for its innovative ICE program. ICE: I Can Excel after-school program uses figure skating to reach impoverished girls of color in inner city New York and improve their academic performance, physical health, and emotional well-being. Participants develop life skills, receive academic tutoring, and cultivate skating skills.
Figure skating is historically a predominantly white sport, so ICE is groundbreaking in that it targets black and brown girls. Yet, it goes several steps beyond that and also incorporates classes in financial literacy, STEM, and college readiness. Each girl has access to tutors, teachers, social workers, counselors, and skating coaches. The all-encompassing programming sets each girl on a path to good grades and healthy living.
At the same time, the sport itself is being diversified. Often, it only takes one athlete’s success to show that everyone, regardless of gender, race, sexual orientation, or religion should have access to all sports. Ibtihaj Muhammad’s success in fencing has empowered Muslim girls to pursue the sport. Simone Manual broke barriers in the pool proving to black girls everywhere that swimming is an option for them. ICE is providing access to sport in communities that typically are ignored, not just by the skating community, but by most sports outside of basketball and football.
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