New GPA Member Pan American Academy Creating Global Citizens from an Early Age

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News courtesy of Pan American Academy Charter School -- Pan American Academy Charter School was recently named an International Baccalaureate World School for the Primary Years Programme, making it the first IB elementary school in Philadelphia.

Pan American Academy Charter School (Pan American) is transforming educational outcomes and life chances for students in Eastern North Philadelphia. The school’s vision is to empower each student to reach their academic and social potential and develop into inquiring, bilingual, intercultural citizens of the global economy.

Founded by Congreso de Latinos Unidos in 2008, Pan American currently serves 726 students in grades K-8, preparing the global leaders of tomorrow through rigorous dual language instruction.

The International Baccalaureate (IB) aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable, and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. To this end, the IB works with schools, governments and international organizations to develop challenging programs of international education and rigorous assessment. These programs encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate, and lifelong learners. The IB distinction serves as a marker for a rigorous and world-class educational institution. Pan American becomes the first IB elementary school in Philadelphia, and one of seven other K-12 schools with this distinction. Pan American is only one of eleven dual-language IB schools in the country.

“We strive to give our students the best possible education, and deliver an educational experience that is truly world-class,” said Pan American Chief Executive Officer Wanda Novalés. “Most children in this area would not have the opportunity to receive this elite education otherwise.”

On a national level, 16% of students in IB schools come from low-income families; at Pan American, 97% of students come from low-income families per federal free and reduced lunch guidelines. In September 2012, Pan American moved into the Trujillo Center, Congreso’s new $15 million educational facility.

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