As we kick off 2021, I want to begin first by saying THANK YOU.
THANK YOU for continuing to generously give of your time, energy, and resources to help ensure our students have the best educational experience possible through these challenging times. Without your help, so much of what we do wouldn’t be possible. From all of us to all of you, we send our deepest heartfelt thanks, and we look forward to continuing this important work together.
This month I am excited to share some truly excellent news: Foundation Academies’ charter has been renewed for another five years (through 2026!) AND our request to expand enrollment has been APPROVED by the NJ Department of Education!
This is an exciting moment for our FAmily. As part of our mission-driven long-term plan to serve more students while maintaining the high quality of the education that we provide, our expansion request includes the opening of a new K-4 school in 2024. This expansion would begin with 112 total students in grades K-1 (two classes of 28 students per grade level), and would continue by adding one new grade level each year.
Looking at the bigger picture of “life in general,” I am rejuvenated with optimism about the future, and inspired by the HOPE that is now emerging thanks to the amazing display of Black Excellence and organizers who continue to make all the difference in dissipating the fog of division that has engulfed our country. Below are a few of my favorite recent inspirational stories of hope, strength, and resilience. Together, the Foundation Academies family celebrates:
- Reverend Rafael Warnock becoming Georgia’s FIRST Black senator, one of only ELEVEN Black senators in the entire history of our Congress.
- Kamala Harris becoming the first Woman and Woman of Color elected to hold the office of Vice President.
- Last and certainly not least, I personally draw great inspiration from the story of Stacey Abrams, who despite losing the Georgian gubernatorial race, demonstrated incredible resilience. Ms. Abrams used her critical consciousness to organize and mobilize her community, fight racially-motivated voter suppression, and built a strong grassroots movement that successfully registered 800,000 new voters in Georgia. Thanks to her determination, the votes of disenfranchised voters were the deciding factor in electing Reverend Warnock, Georgia’s first Black senator. To me, her story really speaks to the power of community and vision, and that is a valuable takeaway for our children to understand.
Though we still face many challenges ahead in 2021, we know that you, the incredible members of our school community, will stand with us as we all do our part to create a better world for our children. And for that, we are truly thankful.
Yours in Community,
Graig Weiss has served as the Chief Executive Officer of Foundation Academies since 2014. He began there 5 years before as Middle School Principal. A 2003 Teach for America corps member, Mr. Weiss taught Math and Science in the Bronx and the Dominican Republic prior to becoming an administrator and was selected as Teacher of the Year in 2007.
Prior to entering the education field, Mr. Weiss worked in the financial services sector with Cambridge Associates, LLC in Boston, MA. He holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Science in Finance and Accounting from the University of Pittsburgh, a Master of Science in Teaching from Fordham University, and a Master of Science in Educational Leadership from the University of Scranton.