Propel Schools, based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, is a not-for-profit organization whose mission is to catalyze the transformation of public education so that all children have access to high performing public schools. Propel does not accept the premise that poverty or family structure determines academic performance or life outcomes. Our mission is pursued by opening and operating high performance schools of choice in educationally underserved communities.
Propel has become one of the largest, fastest-expanding set of charter schools in the state, with the highest levels of student achievement among Pennsylvania public school districts serving high poverty areas. Across Propel schools, 74% of students are eligible for the Federal free/reduced price lunch program; 70% are a minority; and 15% have special needs.
Our first school opened in 2003 with 180 children, occupying a small hospital basement. In 2014, more than 3400 K–12 students are educated at one of these ten facilities:
- Propel Homestead (grades K-8)
- AndrewStreetHigh School (grades 9-12, located in Homestead)
- Braddock Hills Elementary (grades K-8)
- BraddockHillsHigh School (grades 9-12)
- Propel East (grades K-8, located in Turtle Creek)
- Propel McKeesport (grades K-8)
- Propel Montour (grades K-8)
- Propel Northside (grades K-7)
- Propel Pitcairn (grades K-8)
- Propel Hazelwood (grades K – 4)
Our educational programming is research-based and constantly evaluated (both internally and externally). Propel's curriculum follows the Pennsylvania State Standards. At the same time, our schools are innovative, dynamic places where students, teachers, families, community partners and other collaborators work together, with academic achievement of children serving as our central focus. Propel Schools is proud to share its successful strategies with local, regional and national peers and other stakeholders.
The visionary co-founder of Propel Schools, educator Jeremy Resnick, along with CEO/Superintendent, Tina Chekan, EdD (who has been with Propel since its start), continue to successfully lead Propel Schools’ effort to bring high quality public schools to all, especially underserved families. With 3,400 students on our waiting list, Propel continues to clearly be filling a community need for a high performing school option where there otherwise may be little or no choice.