Sankofa Freedom Academy is a college preparatory K-12 freedom school that will build on the Philadelphia Freedom Schools model to increase literacy and numeracy levels throughout the community, promote respect for scholarship, servant leadership, conflict resolution, and cultural democracy. Through the use of African Centered and culturally responsive methodologies, Sankofa Freedom Academy will engender in its students, staff, and community a love for learning, pride in heritage and a commitment to personal and societal transformation. By operationalizing the adage, “each one / teach one”, Sankofa Freedom Academy Charter School will build intergenerational learning communities in which each and every person is responsible to learn in order to teach,and teach in order to build a better world.
In 1999, the Philadelphia Freedom Schools city-wide movement began. Philadelphia Freedom Schools took the movement to another level by introducing its Junior Servant Leadership program, which placed high school students in the classroom with college interns to help develop the scholars. Philadelphia Freedom Schools worked with Children’s Defense Fund/Black Community Crusade for Children from 1999 to 2005. In the summer of 2006, the Philadelphia Freedom Schools launched their very own curriculum model and became a network of independent freedom schools. Always looking for ways to better serve its community, Philadelphia Freedom School created pathways that rooted its scholars in classical African ways of thinking and being. It also reclaimed the original freedom school model and included numeracy in the Philadelphia Freedom School curriculum. In the summer of 2006, members of the freedom school community formed a coalition to apply for a charter school based on the Philadelphia Freedom School model. Freedom School scholars, JSL’s, and SLIs wrote letters, signed petitions, and testified before the Philadelphia School Reform Commission. As a result of their hard work and the hard work of their elders, Sankofa Freedom Academy opened in September of 2009. What an amazing journey. Philadelphia Freedom Schools’ movement continues to grow and glow. Continuing the legacy of the freedom fighters of the past, PFS continues to work to uplift scholars, families, and communities for over a decade here in Philadelphia. With lots of good energy, and by using the principle of Harambee (pulling together), Philadelphia Freedom Schools and now Sankofa Freedom Academy Charter School will continue to be a movement that can be counted on to work for excellence in scholarship, community, and culture, while standing for justice both locally and globally.