Yesterday, Mayor Vincent Gray and Acting State Superintendent Jésus Aguirre officially cut the ribbon on Excel Academy Public Charter School’s new on-site cooking kitchen that serves 1,000 fresh and healthy meals per day. The kitchen was made possible with financing from a Scholarship for Opportunities and Results (SOAR) Act Investing in Public Facilities grant from OSSE’s Office of Public Charter School Financing and Support (OPCSFS).
With their new kitchen, Excel Academy’s 615 students will be able to enjoy a healthy breakfast, lunch, dinner, and two snacks every day at school at no cost to their families. The academy, located at 2501 Martin Luther King, Jr. Ave SE, provides free education to pre-k through eighth grade girls with the mission to provide “a solid academic foundation and enrichment opportunities to prepare them to succeed in high school and college and to develop the skills and confidence they need to make healthy, positive lifestyle choices.”
The ribbon cutting ceremony opened with a performance of “God Bless America” by the Excel Academy Choir and followed by opening remarks by the Founder & CEO of Excel Academy, Kaye Savage about the importance of eating healthy and its link to academic success.
Tracey Langley, OSSE Employee and Excel Academy Parent, took the stage to provide a testimonial about the excellent education Excel Academy provides her daughter and the pride she has as an OSSE employee that is able to help provide children with quality education throughout the District.
Acting State Superintendent Jésus Aguirre remarked on his time as the both an educator and the parks and recreation director on why he believed a healthy lifestyle is an important to education and Mayor Vincent Gray spoke about the recent gains in test scores at Excel Academy and District-wide.
After the ribbon was cut, Excel Academy’s School Chef, Cornell Coulon, served a nutritious and delicious lunch of chicken kebabs, tabbouli, pita, hummus, and fattoush (tomato and cucumber salad) for all the ceremony attendees as well as the students.
Vito Germinario, Excel Academy Board Chair, offered the closing remarks, reflecting on the family dinners Excel Academy has hosted in the past and looking forward to many more with the new kitchen.