At FCS, we know we can’t do it all; it’s why we take partnerships so seriously. We treasure our collaboration with Purpose Built Schools Atlanta and our proximity to the S.T.E.A.M. Academy at Carver. These schools build up our community by tending to its younger residents, and FCS gets to support them by providing safe third spaces and refreshment for educators.
S.T.E.A.M. Academy at Carver’s Principal, Yusuf Muhammad, walks to Community Grounds most days for a cup of coffee. He shares, "I know I can pick up the phone and talk with the FCS team any time and they can do the same with me. That's powerful. I don't know any other schools that have that kind of relationship with neighboring businesses.”
Community Grounds staff encourage students to get to class on time in the morning and while welcome them warmly outside schools hours. As students gather in off-hours, they decompress, enjoy coffee, and chat about the day at school, creating a positive space that still gets associated with classes.
“The kids know when they're at Community Grounds its an extension of their school,” Principal Muhammad muses. “It’s a place where the kids can adjust to doing the right thing. When they make mistakes they're not demonized, they're brought in closer and taught." Community Grounds is more than a good cup of coffee; it is a safe and welcoming gathering spot for everyone in the neighborhood, teachers, administrators, and students alike. It’s part of supporting our community emotionally and relationally.
In the same way, Carver Market supports learning by making quality nutrients available.
“You have a beautiful brain and you need to go use it. You’ll need the right fuel,” Neighborhood Engagement Coordinator Pamela Stringfield remembers telling a high school student one morning in Carver Market as he was browsing for a good breakfast option. We’re hopeful that sending students to learn with the right energy prepares them to better engage their teachers.
This past Tuesday marked a national holiday for appreciating Teachers. We wanted to join in! We’re working to give words of encouragement alongside a delicious cup of coffee for each learner and teacher walking through our doors. Teachers in our community create a nourishing atmosphere for young people to flourish, and a quality education weaves the fabric of place. We’re glad for the ways school can help our young people discover their gifts.
Want to go more in depth on how to partner with local schools? We collected six tried and true tips for supporting local schools.