District Administration - April 2012 - (Page 22)
CEO AND SUPERINTENDENT MYRRHA SATOW, EDVANTAGES AND PERFORMANCE ACADEMIES CHARTER SCHOOLS
A Strong Leader Touts Physical Fitness
EdVantages’ and Performance Academies’ founder stresses the values of fitness, as well as back to basics curriculum, to address the whole child.
By Angela Pascopella
Florida public schools were crowded, with an average of 30 students in a classroom. While working toward her Phd, satow also worked at the usF Charter school resource Center, where she helped provide technical assistance and support for the state’s first charters. By year 2000, she worked as the executive director of the education resource Center at the dayton Chamber of Commerce, and supported new charters in the area. in addition, she managed a grant from the u.s. department of education to offer technical assistance and support to charter school incubators and development groups nationwide. her interest in charters led her to develop her own schools. she partnered with rob shively, a u.s. tennis association certified instructor, who wanted to put a free tennis racket in the hands of students. in 2002, satow
Superintendent Myrrha Satow, center, meets with EdVantages management staff in Columbus, Ohio, in their weekly team meeting to discuss academic progress of special ed students. From left to right: Wendy Samir, special ed director, Satow, Amber Cummings, school psychologist.
For an hour and 15 minutes every day, 2,000 students at edVantages charter schools in ohio and 1.000 students in Performance academies charter schools in ohio and Florida expend physical energy. more specifically, they rotate playing tennis, playing soccer and practicing martial arts a week at a time. For the rest of the six hours and 45 minutes in their school day, they study math, reading, social studies and science. The eight-hour days for the K8 students at edVantages, which has eight schools in ohio with “fitness academy” in their names, and at Performance academies, which has three schools in Florida and two in Columbus, ohio, are more productive academically because the students are physically active, says Ceo myrrha satow. “We have kids that maybe aren’t the number one athlete, but they are benefit22 April 2012
ing from the daily fitness instruction,” satow says. “a lot of kids get really excited about martial arts. it helps them to focus and learn about attention, concentration and self-control. a lot of skills like that lend themselves to the academic classroom. We have many kids with adhd, and to exercise self-control and confidence and then learn about teamwork in soccer and creating a climate of competition and success helps them want to excel.” Satow’s Beginnings satow began her career as a private, middle school teacher in tampa. in the late 1990s, she attained a Phd in special education, with a focus on education policy, at the university of south Florida. “at the time, i was a parent of four small children. i saw the need for school choice, as i was struggling myself to pay for private school for them,” satow recalls. at the time,
superintendent and CEO of EdVantages and Performance Academies Charter schools Age: 45 Salary: $144,000 Tenure: 10 years Students: EdVantages: 2,000 Performance Academies: 1,000 Staff/faculty: EdVantages: 300 Performance Academies: 108 Schools: EdVantages: 8 Performance Academies: 5 Students qualifying for free or reduced-price lunch: EdVantages: 87 percent Performance Academies: 70 percent
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of District Administration - April 2012
District Administration - April 2012
From the Editor
Special Ed Update
Robust and Safe BYOD
Success Breeds Success
Funding Building Projects in a Tough Economy
Widening Participation to an IB Education
Why All the Chatter about #EdChat?
District Administration - April 2012