• CUSD to Offer Grief Support Services as Recovery Mission for 6-Year-Old Child Has Ended

    Posted by Chester Upland School District on 3/26/2024

    CHESTER, PA- March 26, 2024 On March 26, the recovery mission for six-year-old Lin'ajah Brooker was officially called off. Our hearts go out to her family and friends as they navigate this incredibly difficult time.

    Although Lin’ajah did not attend a school in our district, this tragic incident saddens the entire community. 

    To provide support during this period of grief and uncertainty, CUSD is offering grief services to those in the school community who may have been impacted by the tragic event. While CUSD is on spring recess this week, anyone who needs support can use the resources below:

    We also encourage parents and caregivers to have open conversations with their children about this tragic event, and to reach out to us for any assistance or support needed.

    We would also like to extend our deepest gratitude to all the emergency responders who swiftly responded to the situation and worked tirelessly over the past few days.

    Again, our thoughts and prayers remain with the family and loved ones affected by this heartbreaking incident.

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  • CUSD Receives $1.8 Million Grant to Enhance Educational Environment

    Posted by Chester Upland School District on 3/25/2024

    CHESTER, PA - March 25, 2024 -  The Chester Upland School District (CUSD) is excited to announce that it was recently awarded a $1,833,360 grant by the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) through the federal Bipartisan Safer Communities Act (BSCA) Stronger Connections Program. This grant aims to establish safe, healthy, and supportive learning opportunities and environments for staff and students.

     

    The funding awarded to CUSD will be used to address students’ social, emotional, physical, and mental well-being needs, create positive, inclusive, and supportive school environments, and increase access to evidence-based interventions and services.

     

    CUSD’s objectives will be achieved through a series of targeted programs, initiatives, and activities:

     

    Objective 1: Addressing students’ well-being needs

    • Implementation of evidence-based programs such as SPARK Mentoring curricula and Penn Resilience Program.
    • Provision of Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) for students struggling with various mental health challenges.
    • Focus on Tier 2 and Tier 3 services by Master’s level mental health professionals.

     

    Objective 2: Engaging stakeholders in creating safe learning environments

    • Family Outreach Coordinators to enhance parent and family engagement through programs like Family Check-Up and Attendance Mailings Home.
    • Utilization of technology for effective communication with parents through strategies like Texting with Parents.

     

    Dr. Latrice N. Mumin, Ed. D., MBA, Interim Superintendent of Schools, expressed gratitude, stating, "We are thankful to our state elected officials for advocating for this crucial funding. This grant will have a significant impact on our school community, enabling us to create safer and more supportive environments for our students and staff.  We take a holistic approach to educating our scholars and this grant will help us have access to more resources that align with that vision.”

     

    Chester Upland School District Receiver Nafis Nichols echoed Dr. Mumin’s sentiment, emphasizing the significant impact the funding will have on the district. “We are excited to receive this much needed funding so that we can address issues and implement positive initiatives district-wide,” said Receiver Nichols. “We are grateful to our partners and advocates on the state level who work collaboratively with us to ensure our students have the resources they need to successfully transition to adulthood. CUSD is committed to focusing on the mental health needs of our students and grant funding will help us meet our goals.”

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  • Chester Upland School District Launches BusPatrol Safety Program to Protect Students at Bus Stops

    Posted by Chester Upland School District on 12/15/2023

    Chester Upland School District Launches BusPatrol Safety Program to Protect Students at Bus Stops

    All district buses will be modernized with photo enforcement technology to tackle illegal passings.

     


    school bus camera being installed on a yellow school busCHESTER, PA - December 15, 2023 - Children who ride to school on the bus can expect a safer, smarter commute thanks to a new safety initiative in the city of Chester. The Chester Upland School District (CUSD) has partnered with local law enforcement and BusPatrol to tackle the illegal passing of stopped school buses.

     

    As part of the safety initiative, the entire fleet of CUSD buses will be outfitted with automated enforcement technology to detect the license plates of vehicles that fail to stop for school buses, putting children at risk. The video evidence is shared with local law enforcement for review before a citation is issued.

     

    The program is expected to go live in February 2024, following an education and public awareness campaign. The campaign seeks to educate motorists and learner drivers about school bus safety laws and teach school children how to get on and off the bus as safely as possible. This education will be ongoing once the program is live.

     

    “I am excited that CUSD will soon launch the BusPatrol Safety Program to protect our students at bus stops," said Interim Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Latrice M. Mumin. "During community meetings, I and other CUSD administrators heard from dozens of concerned parents and citizens regarding safety concerns for our students who ride public transportation. With that in mind, and focusing on our commitment to protecting our students, we have partnered with BusPatrol and are moving forward with implementing the program.”

     

    Last October, Pennsylvania authorities reported more than 250 stop-arm violations in one day during Operation Safe Stop. In 2020, Allentown School District captured over 200 illegal passings on just two school buses over a 47-day stop-arm study. This is equal to 2.18 violations per bus per day.

     

    Kate Spree, a spokesperson for BusPatrol, said that the safety initiative is proven to make roads safer: "Every day, thousands of cars ignore school bus stop-arms and speed past school buses as children are stepping on and off. Sadly, this dangerous motorist behavior is only getting worse. Our safety programs combine education and enforcement to change driver behavior and ensure that all motorists know when to stop for the big yellow bus. In some communities, our programs have reduced the rate of illegal passing by up to 30% YoY." 

     

    In addition to stop-arm cameras, CUSD will equip its buses with safety features at no cost to the district or taxpayers. The technology, installation, and maintenance are funded by violation revenue over a 5-year term.

      

    As stated by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, motorists must stop at least 10 feet away from school buses with red lights flashing and stop-arm extended. The penalty for a first-time violation is $300.

     

    To learn more about CUSD’s Bus Safety Program, visit here.  

     

    You can find more information about BusPatrol at www.buspatrol.com.

     

    ABOUT BUSPATROL

    BusPatrol is a safety technology company that aims to make the journey to and from school safer for children. BusPatrol's safety programs change driver behavior and create a culture of awareness and responsibility around school buses. In addition, they provide accessibility for school districts and municipalities to modernize their entire school bus fleets by outfitting them with the latest stop-arm, route planning, and route execution technology.

     

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  • CUSD Hosts 2nd Annual Grandparents Pre-Thanksgiving Day Luncheon

    Posted by T3 Media on 11/20/2023

     

    CUSD Hosts 2nd Annual Grandparents Pre-Thanksgiving Day Luncheon

     

    2023 Luncheon

     

    CHESTER, PA- November 20, 2023 - For the second consecutive year, the Chester Upland School District (CUSD), in collaboration with the city of Chester, hosted the Grandparents Pre-Thanksgiving Day Luncheon for local senior citizens and grandparents of graduating high school seniors on November 16 at Chester High School.

     

    Nearly 100 seniors attended the luncheon, and enjoyed a catered meal and festive decorations courtesy of Red Brick Café. The menu featured traditional Thanksgiving dishes such as turkey, stuffing, ham, collard greens, sweet potato pie, and more.

     

    The district's Career and Technical Education (CTE) program, led by Dr. Angela Thompson, played a pivotal role in the event's success. Marketing students acted as hostesses, while culinary arts students served the delicious meals.

     

    Claudia Averette, Chief of Staff at CUSD expressed her gratitude for the event. "It was truly humbling to serve our seniors for the second consecutive year,” said Averette. “Many of them mentioned that without this event, they might have missed a Thanksgiving meal due to various circumstances. It's heartwarming, and they deserve it.”

     

    CUSD’s Interim Superintendent of Schools, Latrice N. Mumin, Ed. D., MBA, added, "This event wouldn’t have been possible without our partnership with the city of Chester and our talented CTE students. There is much we can accomplish together in our schools and community when we work together.”

     

    In addition to having meals during the event, seniors who attended had the opportunity to take home leftover food, ensuring that the spirit of Thanksgiving extended beyond the luncheon.

    The district is proud to serve local seniors and grandparents and value their contributions to the community

     

    CUSD’s annual Grandparents Pre-Thanksgiving Luncheon event takes place the week before Thanksgiving to highlight our gratitude for our seasoned residents.

     

     

     

     

     

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  • CUSD Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month

    Posted by T3 Media on 10/17/2023

    CUSD Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month at Chester High School & District-Wide

     

    CHESTER, PA- October 10, 2023 - The Chester Upland School District (CUSD) proudly continues its commemoration of Hispanic Heritage Month through a series of district-wide activities.

    On October 10, CUSD hosted a Hispanic Heritage Month celebration at Chester High School, serving as a focal point in an array of district-wide initiatives designed to engage students and staff in various activities. These activities included mural displays, cultural dance lessons, and various projects.

    As a proud Latinx American and the district's Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Coordinator, Dana Bowser, from Central Administration, has been collaborating with school leaders, staff, and students to develop activities and celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month district-wide. She emphasizes the importance of acknowledging and celebrating Hispanic culture, stating, "Hispanic Heritage Month is a time for us to unite, appreciate our rich cultural diversity, and reinforce our commitment to equity and inclusion, and fostering an environment of belonging. It's both a privilege and a joy to lead these initiatives, and I'm truly honored by the enthusiasm shown by our students and staff."

    In addition to students' inquiries about the various activities highlighting the month, dozens of Latinx students expressed their gratitude, with many vocalizing their surprise and appreciation for the celebration and the focus on their culture.

    The celebration at Chester High School was a lively event, showcasing Latinx-themed music, salsa lessons, a variety of Latin American candies, and displays honoring notable Hispanic/Latin American figures. Chartwell, the district's food service provider, helped round out the festivities by serving popular cultural dishes for breakfast and lunch.

    Dr. Latrice N. Mumin, Ed. D., MBA, CUSD’s Interim Superintendent of Schools, emphasized the district's commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, stating, "CUSD takes immense pride in embracing the uniqueness of our student body and staff while actively promoting diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging throughout our district. Hispanic Heritage Month provides us with a wonderful opportunity to celebrate our Latinx community members, recognize their contributions, and honor their culture."

    The final event of the CUSD celebration is scheduled for tomorrow, October 11, at Toby Farms Intermediate School. Ms. Bowser will visit Toby Farms Intermediate School to instruct students in Salsa/Merengue dance lessons, reaffirming the district's commitment to providing engaging and educational experiences for its diverse student population.

     

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  • Federal Grant of Over $900K Awarded to CUSD to Bolster School Safety

    Posted by T3 Media on 10/17/2023

     

     Federal Grant of Over $900K Awarded to CUSD to Bolster School Safety

     

    CHESTER, PA - October 9, 2023 -  The Chester Upland School District (CUSD) is proud to announce that it has been awarded a total of $994,000 through the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) STOP School Violence Program. This grant will enable the district to further enhance school safety measures and continue its commitment to providing a secure learning environment for students and staff.

     

    The BJA STOP School Violence Program is dedicated to supporting and assisting county, local, territorial, and tribal jurisdictions in their efforts to reduce violent crime in and around schools. This program plays a crucial role in addressing safety concerns and fostering a safe atmosphere for education.

     

    CUSD applied for the grant under the program’s category two eligibility requirement, which includes local and tribal governments, 501 (c)(3) nonprofits (other than Institutions of Higher Education), private IHEs, and independent school districts. 

     

    With the grant, CUSD will partner with The Lincoln Center for Family and Youth (TLC) to implement the Preventing School Violence in Chester Upland School District project. The project is designed to:

    • Train school staff: All school staff will participate in universal trainings to prevent

    school violence, including learning essential restorative practices elements. 

    • Train select school staff: Select staff will receive advanced training in restorative

    practices to serve as school violence prevention and school climate leaders and

    resources; some staff will receive training certification for the International Institute for

    Restorative Practices (IIRP) SaferSanerSchools.  

    • Educate students and their parent(s)/caregiver(s): Trainings include strategies for

    promoting a positive school climate, antibullying, and available school- and

    community-based mental health services.

    • Provide training for SROs: SROs will receive specialized training in subjects

    like ethics, understanding individual student needs, mentoring, the teen brain, violence

    and victimization, school law, and developing relationships with diverse students. 

    • Evaluate school personnel trainings: Assess the effectiveness of increasing school

    personnel content knowledge on school violence prevention and school climate. 

    • Evaluate students and parent(s)/caregivers(s) trainings: Assess the effectiveness of preventing school violence.

     

    CUSD’s Interim Superintendent Dr. Latrice N. Mumin, Ed. D., MBA, expressed enthusiasm about the grant, stating, "This grant is a significant step towards advancing the safety and security of our schools. With these funds, we will implement the Preventing School Violence in Chester Upland School District project, and measure its impact and effectiveness over a three-year period. Our goal is to ensure that every student feels safe and protected in their learning environment."

     

    “This is the type of financial assistance that helps our children advance both academically, educationally, and socially,” said Chester City Mayor Thaddeus Kirkland. “When violence in and around our schools is reduced positive outcomes from our schools increase.”

     

    U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) echoed Mayor Kirkland’s sentiment, also commending the district's efforts, stating, “This grant is an investment in not only our children’s safety, but in their educational, emotional, and social development. When we make classrooms safer, we set students up for success and protect them from violence. Ensuring our kids’ wellbeing is the most important investment we can make.”

     

    CUSD is dedicated to providing a secure and nurturing environment for students to learn and grow. This grant will further strengthen their commitment to safety and contribute to the overall well-being of the school community.

     

    About the Bureau of Justice Assistance STOP School Violence Program:

    The STOP School Violence (SSV) program seeks to increase school safety. The program's objectives are to increase school safety using evidence-based solutions to prevent violence against schools, staff, and students and ensure a positive school climate. The funding is administered through the Bureau of Justice Assistance to support county, local, territorial, and tribal jurisdictions in their efforts to reduce violent crime in and around schools.

     

    About the Chester Upland School District:

    The Chester Upland School District (CUSD) is a mid-sized, urban public school district serving the City of Chester, the Borough of Upland, and Chester Township in Delaware County, Pennsylvania. Within the approximately six square miles that encompass the district, CUSD operates a high school (on two campuses), two intermediate schools, and four elementary schools, serving approximately 3,213 students.

     

    CUSD is located in historic Delaware County, Pennsylvania. It is situated on the Delaware River, between the cities of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Wilmington, Delaware.  The district is an hour’s drive from the Jersey Shore and Delaware Beaches. It is a two-hour drive from the Pocono Mountains and New York City.

     

    By proactively leveraging resources within and outside of the Chester Upland School District, CUSD has established a quality school system that is responsive and accountable; an inclusive environment where all have access to learning and where students are both physically and emotionally safe; high expectations for student achievement and teacher performance; a rigorous, relevant, and integrated curriculum that engages all students in learning around real-world experiences; and positive partnerships through collaboration between staff and students, families and other community members.

     violence grant

     

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  • Hundreds Gather for Chester Upland School District’s Annual Backpack Giveaway

    Posted by T3 Media on 8/26/2023

    CHESTER, PA-  August 25, 2023 - On Wednesday, hundreds of local families attended the Chester Upland School District’s (CUSD) Annual Backpack Giveaway. 

     

    The event, generously sponsored by NFL player and Chester native Bilal Nichols, provided a day filled with free fun and essential supplies for the upcoming school year.

     

    Attendees enjoyed a variety of free activities and food including a BBQ-style meal, face painting, moon bounces, concession stands, water ice, horseback riding, as well as access to community health information and resources, and music. The highlight of the day was the school supply giveaways, which ensured that students were well-equipped to start the school season.

     

    Dr. Parkinson, Superintendent of Schools for Chester Upland School District, expressed his gratitude for how the giveaway turned out. "We are incredibly thankful to our event sponsor and community partners for coming together to ensure the success of this event and to provide our students with the necessary supplies to begin the school year,” said Dr. Parkinson. “It's always great to witness our families and students having fun together. We are looking forward to a successful upcoming school season."

     

    CUSD officials and volunteers from the Making a Change Group helped to distribute backpacks filled with school supplies to the event attendees. Local community organizations, including Everest Urgent Care, set up resource tables offering additional school supplies. The City of Chester's Recycling department also participated in the event, providing a sign-up sheet for residents interested in receiving a city-issued trash can and learning more about the city's recycling program.

     

    Additionally, representatives from every CUSD school were present at informational tables, engaging with parents and students to address their questions and concerns.

     

    CUSD extends heartfelt gratitude to all who attended the event, including the event partners: The Boys and Girls Club of Chester, Making a Change Group, and the 21st Century Community Learning Center Program.

     

    The first day of school for all CUSD students is Tuesday, September 5, 2023.

    Backpack

    backpack

    backpack

    backpack

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  • Youth and Family Summit 2022

    Posted by Chester Upland School District on 11/23/2022

     

     

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                  

     

                                                                                                

     

     

    More than 100 Families Attend CUSD Youth and Family Summit

     

    CHESTER, PA- November 21, 2022 - The Chester Upland School District (CUSD) in partnership with the Boys & Girls Club of Chester, Chester Biddy Basketball, and 21st Century Chester welcomed more than 100 local families to their annual Youth and Family Summit on Saturday at STEM Academy High School.

    This year’s event focused on providing families with health and wellness information. Several vendors were in attendance, including representatives from the Chester Education Foundation and Harcum College.

    Michelle Jackson, Community Outreach Coordinator for DELCORA attended the event on behalf of her company and used an interactive exhibit to help families understand how wastewater travels.

    The summit also featured a packed morning itinerary for families ranging from Zumba, breakfast, breakout sessions with guest speakers for teenage boys and girls called barbershop and beauty shop talk, Home Access Training for parents led by members of Parent University, and Chester Biddy Basketball camps. 

    “It was great to see so many people come out to this event,” said Dr. Craig Parkinson, Superintendent of Schools for Chester Upland School District. “This was a great representation of the community. I especially liked participating in the barbershop talk with our young men.”

    The barbershop and beauty shop breakout sessions were added to the summit’s agenda last year to allow teenage students an opportunity to speak with adults in a small group setting about issues relative to their gender and social and emotional well-being.

    Ebony Gordon, a Chester native, and mother of two CUSD children reflected on the day’s activities.  “I think it was amazing. It was a good experience for the children,” said Gordon. “I liked that the older men got to talk to the younger boys because a lot of boys don’t have male role models. We need more events like this for the community and young kids.”

    To round out the day, families were offered a hot lunch as Dr. Marina Barnett, Associate Professor at Widener University, and Dana Bowser, Social Emotional Learning Coordinator for CUSD, presented data from the district’s Biannual Pennsylvania Youth Survey (PAYS) Report.

    The day ended with several bike raffles. Each student also received a free winter jacket.

    The district would like to thank all event partners, vendors, and speakers for helping to make the event a success.

     

    PICTURE CAPTION: The Chester Upland School District (CUSD) hosted its annual Fall and Youth Summit for local families and CUSD students at STEM Academy High School on Saturday.

     

     

    Youth summit 1    youth summit2

     

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  • Chester High Wraps Up Hispanic Heritage Month With Celebration

    Posted by Chester Upland School District on 11/1/2022

    CHESTER, PA- October 29, 2022 - On October 19 Chester High School (CHS) hosted a wrap-up celebration to mark the ending of National Hispanic Heritage Month. 

     

    CHS students and personnel were greeted by Latin American music, and a festively decorated table topped with bowls of Latin American candies when they entered the third-floor main entrance.

     

    Dana Bowser, the district’s Social Emotional Learning Coordinator worked with CHS Principal Ronald Brown to put the celebration together. As a Latinx American, Ms. Bowser was thrilled to help spearhead the celebration.

     

    hhm dancing

     

    “Mr. Brown and I were talking about the culture of CHS, and the district has a large Latinx population of nearly 10 percent,” said Bowser. “We wanted to make sure that all of our kids felt included and we wanted to do something to portray and display the culture, music, decorations, and taste from different Latin American countries.”

     

     

    As students and staff passed through the halls, Ms. Bowser passed out candy, talked about the purpose of the festivities, and directed people to a decorated wall, which displayed famous Latinx Americans. She even gave Salsa lessons to a few students who passed by on their way to class.

     

    PICTURE CAPTION: Dana Bowser, Social Emotional Learning Coordinator for Chester Upland School District, teaches a Chester High School student salsa lessons during the school’s Hispanic Heritage Month wrap-up celebration on October 19.  

     

    One of the students who joined Ms. Bowser for dancing lessons was James Carr. Carr, who is of Puerto Rican, Black and White descent and a senior at CHS said he was shocked when he walked into the building. “To hear this music in the school, I felt appreciated that the district is representing for Latinos,” said Carr. “I listen to this music every day when I’m at home or in the car with my mother.”

     

    Annually, our country celebrates National Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15 through October 15. During the month people highlight the history, and culture of Latin American countries while celebrating the impact that Hispanic/Latinx Americans have made on the United States. 

     

    “Our students found the celebration to be extremely enjoyable and we were also able to spread awareness to our students and staff,” said Brown. “The demographic of our student body is rich and diverse. Our differences should be celebrated and we hope that our Hispanic students recognize how much they are appreciated.”

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  • Chester High Football Team Highlighted in The Philadelphia Inquirer

    Posted by Chester Upland School District on 10/15/2022

    All too familiar with grief, Chester High football players reach out to Roxborough

    Chester's coach and his five senior captains made the 20-mile trip to Roxborough to show support for that school's traumatized students after last month's deadly shooting.  Click on the picture to access the full article.

     

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