We are excited to tell you that the More Than Me Academy opens on September 7th! We can't wait for this new adventure. The opening has come at a crucial time, as the BBC recently reported that out of 25,000 high school graduates taking the entrance exam to the University of Liberia, 100% failed. You read that right. 25,000 out of 25,000. You don’t need to be a statistics genius to know that something is desperately wrong with the education system here.
And we’re ready to take on this challenge.
One of the most important things we did to prepare for the school opening was doing a full baseline assessment of our girls, showing us strengths, needs, and grade levels. On August 17th, we gave the first assessment to our girls. This meant a lot of math and reading on a Saturday. Luckily, the girls love tests (weird, but true)!
Because of our high standards, we were expecting to do some remediation. However, the results were more surprising than we expected: none of our girls are at grade level, and many do not have skills as basic as phonemic awareness and algebraic thinking.
We’re taking an innovative approach to bring the girls up to speed as much as possible, via an intensive math and literacy intervention. This curriculum will be accompanied by the beautiful new building, international and Liberian co-teachers in every classroom, a cutting-edge aquaponics garden (thanks, Sustainability without Borders!), health and nutrition classes, an extensive after-school program, one-on-one tutoring, access to a computer lab, and so much more!
THIS WEEK ONLY, a generous supporter has donated $5,000 and challenged us to match it before the school opens! We are collecting donations through our More Than Me Girls Academy project on GlobalGiving. Help these girls have the amazing school they deserve!
Thank you for your continued support. Our girls benefit every day because you decided to live for more than just yourself. For more updates, check out our facebook page.
Everything for the girls,
The More Than Me Team
Thank you so much for funding a computer lab for the girls! The skills they will learn are essential for continuing education and entering the work force - and you made it happen!
Cyrus Cooper is our after-school computer class teacher. As we prepare for the new More Than Me Academy to open in September, Cyrus is focused on teaching the girls important computer skills throughout the summer, and they've shown tremendous progress!
They've made great strides in Microsoft Word and they learned how to create invitations and images on the computer. Below is a photo of Eve Hammon's work - she made the Liberian flag! The girls enjoy learning so much and we are incredibly grateful to Cyrus for his dedication to teaching the girls.
Another amazing opportunity: Don't miss your chance to win a trip to Liberia! Join our Meet Her at the Finish Line campaign and you could get to visit the More Than Me Academy and meet the girls! Find out more on our blog.
Again, we thank you. We couldn't do any of this without you!
For the girls,
P.S. Cyrus and the girls made it into GlobalGiving's photo contest this year! Voting ends this Wednesday, July 31st! Click here to vote for Cyrus and More Than Me!
Last Saturday, we had a kickball tournament for our girls. They absolutely loved it! We had cold water and PB&J sandwiches for them thanks to donations from Exclusive Supermarket and UN Drive Supermarket in Monrovia. Our photographer Morgana really captured the fun and excitement of the day!
Our founder, Katie Meyler, was interviewed on MSNBC last Saturday on the Melissa Harris-Perry show. Melissa even promised to visit Liberia and meet the girls!
Our Liberian Teaching Fellowship program is off to an amazing start! We will have orientation in NYC June 14-16. Our fellows are super talented and we can't wait to showcase them in future updates. They are going to make big changes in Liberia this year. We can feel it!
Match Day is coming up on Wednesday, June 12th. On that day, your donation will be matched by 50% and will go toward giving these girls the ability to make choices for themselves. Will you partner with us in opening the MTM Academy doors by donating on June 12th? To give you an idea of how much school costs in Liberia, one girl can attend school for a year on $350 (That's less than a dollar a day!).
Thank you so much for your continued support! Until the next update!
- The More Than Me Team