More than 530 new teachers for the School District of Philadelphia were honored last week for their commitment to educating Philadelphia’s public school children during an event that celebrated a week long of training. The Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau (PHLCVB), Greater Philadelphia Hotel Association and Pennsylvania Convention Center, working in conjunction with the Fund for the School District of Philadelphia, donated gift bags full of desk supplies to new teachers, reinforcing the Fund’s promise to bring a new and unique partnership to support the District’s 135,000 students. The bags contained school supplies such as paper, rulers, pens, pencils and more to help the new roster of educators get the school year started on the right track.
On hand for the celebration were superintendent William R. Hite, Mayor Jim Kenney; Donna Frisby-Greenwood, President/CEO, Fund for the School District; Julie Coker Graham, President/CEO, Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau; Ed Grose, Executive Director, Greater Philadelphia Hotel Association and John McNichol, President/CEO, Pennsylvania Convention Center.
“I want to thank all of our amazing partners for making this event a great success. We are starting the upcoming school year in the strongest position since I became superintendent. The passion and dedication I saw this week from our new teachers is one of the main reasons I am so excited about the upcoming school year,” Hite said. “I want to thank Mayor Kenney for being such a fantastic partner to the District. He has been with us from the day he was elected to office and he has honored every promise he has made to support the District.”
“It is always encouraging when different sectors come together to support public education,” Kenney said. “This is the vision behind our community schools initiative. As the program takes off this school year, I look forward to seeing more businesses, funders, community organizations, and residents finding ways to support our students. I want to thank PHLCVB, Greater Philadelphia Hotel Association, and Pennsylvania Convention Center for their generous contribution to our hardworking teachers.”
“We are so grateful for the members of the City’s hospitality industry who have stepped to the plate today with gifts for our new teachers. The Convention & Visitors Bureau, the Pennsylvania Convention Center, and the Greater Philadelphia Hotel Association are the face of the city for visitors and conventioneers far and near,” said Donna Frisby-Greenwood, the Fund’s president & CEO. “Their special expertise is to bring new people and visitors into the city and make them feel at home. Thank you for helping to extend a warm welcome to our new class of teachers—some are just beginning their careers, some bringing us a perspective and experience from other parts of the region and the nation, and some returning to us. Although a small token of our collective appreciation, the gift bags let our new teachers know we value their talent and commitment to our students.”
“Teachers play a major role in shaping our community and planting the seeds of interest in students who may go on to pursue careers in the hospitality industry. Our three organizations in partnership with the The Fund for the School District of Philadelphia are extremely pleased to be able to support the work of these teachers and our city’s future leaders,” said Julie Coker Graham, President & CEO, Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau.
This event, held at the Arts Academy in Benjamin Rush Magnet High School in Northeast Philadelphia, commemorated the commitment to quality training, resources and access to information by the District for new teachers. During the week, participants attended a series of professional development workshops focused on instruction and classroom management, as well as onboarding sessions addressing general district policies and procedures. The week also provided newly hired teachers with an opportunity to build their professional network, invest in the district’s vision and build a solid foundation for a successful school year.