Mississippi Association of Partners in Education #PartnershipPower
2011 Partnership Excellence Award Franklin Academy Medical
Sciences & Wellness Magnet School and Frank P. Phillips YMCA
Franklin holds the distinction of being the oldest public
school in the state and is housed in a building recognized by the National
Historic Registry and is a Mississippi Historic Landmark designated by the
state. Franklin Academy has a rich history steeped in tradition yet continues
to blaze trails in the community, state and nation.
Franklin became the first and only Medical Sciences &
Wellness Magnet School in Mississippi during the 2008-09 term. At Franklin, an
integral part of instruction includes promoting a healthy lifestyle through
nutrition, character education and physical fitness routines. Our stakeholders
including students, parents, teachers and community leaders have embraced this
commitment to physical education and the improvement of healthy lifestyles.
The students enrolled at Franklin are here because they have
a strong desire and willingness to strive for excellence in the medical and
fitness fields. One of our first efforts to develop a world-class wellness
program was the partnership forged with our local YMCA. Little did we know our
need for space and desire to expand our fitness program would open the doors to
building character traits in our students that will last a lifetime.
As part of our community partnership, Franklin students can
be seen three days a week at the local YMCA exercising and building social and
communication skills. On Tuesday through Thursday, two different grade levels
walk the two blocks to the YMCA for “Y” time. As a result, students’ activity
time has expanded to socializing with community members, awareness of their
surroundings and pride in themselves, school and community.
Duration of partnership: 3 years 6 volunteers Impacts 412 students
allowed to use YMCA gym, inside walking track and equipment. Larger space
allows students to participate in team sports, learn teamwork and build
self-esteem. YMCA employs 3 staff members to work directly with students. Students
allowed longer activity periods on YMCA days.
Activities helping build communication and social skills through increased
community interaction. Also building positive relationships with law
enforcement officers due to close proximity to Lowndes County Courthouse.
Student absentee and tardy rates decrease on YMCA days. Real-life experiences
help build character.