Boston-area charter schools are hailed for their success in closing the achievement gap by producing some of the strongest rates of learning growth for urban students of color anywhere in the U.S.. With their laser focus on college prep and their “no excuses” mantra, charters expect all their students to work hard and to prioritize academics. At charters, a longer school day leaves less time for sports and other extracurriculars, and their urban locations make securing field and gym time a perennial challenge.
Like its Boston charter peers just across the Charles River, high-performing Community Charter School of Cambridge tries hard to offer a well-rounded high school experience, but given the school’s small size (just 360 students in grades 7-12) and lack of any athletic facilities, the scholar-athlete ideal tips heavily toward the scholar side. But that could change, a bit, this spring if CCSC succeeds in launching a boys lacrosse team.
Not lacking, however, is student interest in lacrosse: last fall over 60 boys attended a meeting with CCSC Athletic Director James Morin, who has played and coached at the collegiate level, to learn more about a sport most of the students have never even seen played, let alone tried themselves.
Since that initial meeting Coach Morin and other school officials have worked to secure equipment donations from local and national lacrosse companies to make it possible to offer boys lacrosse at CCSC this spring. In the past month alone, CCSC has received generous donations from Warrior, Nike, Epoch, and StringKing. The only equipment that is still needed are gloves and elbow pads. Once fully equipped, CCSC will compete at the club level against other charters and small schools in the Boston area, starting in March 2014.
Help Equip CCSC’s New Lacrosse Team
Community Charter School of Cambridge is seeking donations of new or gently used lacrosse gloves and elbow pads for its new high school team of 20 boys. Donated equipment can be shipped directly to the school at 245 Bent Street, Cambridge, MA 02141.
Or, supporters can make a tax-deductible donation to the school’s 501(c)(3) charitable entity (Community Charter School of Cambridge Foundation, Inc.), earmarked for the boys lacrosse program. How to make a gift to CCSC.
About Community Charter School of Cambridge Founded in 2005 and located in Kendall Square, CCSC serves 360 students from the Cambridge, Boston and the surrounding towns. The majority of CCSC students hail from historically underserved communities, with over 50% qualifying for free or reduced lunch. Over 95% are students of color, and most will the first in their families to go to college. Through the hard work of our students and staff, CCSC’s 10th graders have earned the school a #1 MCAS ranking in ELA for the past two years, and a #1 MCAS ranking in math in 2012 and 2011. Rates of achievement growth also are outstanding across all grades. And since 2009, when CCSC graduated its first class, 100% of seniors have been admitted to college, with 90% admitted to four-year schools.
Athletics at CCSC: To complement its focus on college preparation and character development, CCSC has sought to build a robust athletics program, despite a significant lack of resources and facilities. (The school does not have a gym or any playing fields.) Boys and girls compete against 16 other charter schools in seven different sports soccer, basketball, softball, track and cross country). To broaden its competitive offerings and to meet student interest, the school intends to launch a boys’ lacrosse team in March 2014. The vast majority of CCSC students would not be able to afford their own equipment, and most of the schools’ athletic budget is used to rent field space. Thus, the school is seeking equipment donations and/or financial support to make this possible.
We are grateful to Lacrosse Playground for publishing this piece on their blog.