Overbrook Educational Center k-8
6722 Lansdowne Avenue
Providing all students with the academic, technological & social skills needed to be productive & contributing citizens in our society.
Overbrook Educational Center
A Message From Our Principal:
Welcome to the Overbrook Educational Center.
There is no other school in the world like Overbrook Educational Center. If you are reading this right now, then you are unlike 31% of the students at OEC who are unable to read this print without magnification, technology aides, large print or braille. Slightly under 1/3 of our student population is blind or visually impaired (VI).
The “C” in OEC’s mission (to Care for all) epitomizes the sentiment that helping others is what life is centrally about. At OEC, our VI population helps our general education population of students and vice versa in all aspects of learning. There is nothing more important than what the “C” in OEC stands for, to “care for all.”
OEC is an extremely unique place and the entire OEC family is proud of this distinction. To reiterate our extraordinariness, we have the largest population in the entire Philadelphia Public School District of blind and visually impaired students. Our purposefully designed vision program is led by a team of experienced, incredibly knowledgeable staff. On average, teachers in the vision program have 28+ years of experience working with children who have vision deficiencies.
At OEC, we have a full time dean, full time counselor, full time special education liaison, and a committed, dedicated staff who consistently use restorative practices to solve conflicts. We believe that students are continually developing and along with that growth comes errors in judgment. The most important thing is that students learn from their mistakes and are able to reflect on their past decisions in order to improve and move forward.
At OEC, there are 250 students and in 2016 we will add 21 kindergarten students. One of our primary values is that we honor diversity. With such a unique population of students who do not have the ability to see fully and in some cases at all, students at OEC learn truly how to respect and appreciate everyone and work together.
The primary instructional focus at OEC for 2015 is to improve literacy. This cannot be done in isolation, however. Teams are essential to achieving our goals as a school. Staff serving students in grades K-3 utilize DRA to measure student growth and staff serving students in grades 4-8 utilize the Scholastic Reading Intervention online tool to measure student lexile levels and demonstrate growth.
At OEC it is expected that staff complete the following three strategies to reach our instructional goals:
1. Plan monthly units together and provide feedback to one another with the purpose to ensure accurate sequencing and the evolution of objectives each month.
2. Visit one another’s classroom once a month with the purpose to share best practices, provide feedback to one another, and build trust and team work.
3. Implement 22 minutes of SSR every day for every student in the school to further build an interest in reading and inspire students to read independently.
In terms of school climate, at OEC, we have three main goals:
1. To have every teacher earn proficient or distinguished on their end of year evaluation.
2. To have 1,000 additional hours of volunteer service to support our school’s vision and mission.
3. To increase community partnerships by 42%.
Our vision program is what makes OEC the exceptional school it is today. Our doors are always open and we welcome you to come visit. We invite you to come to OEC, check us out, and see all the wonderful things happening in each of our classrooms every day.
Every student needs and deserves a mentor, coach, or guide in life. Parents, grandparents, teachers, coaches, religious leaders, aunts, or uncles can serve as these crucial motivators in student lives.
The most influential person in my life was and is my dad. Five years ago, he lost a courageous battle to cancer. Even though my dad physically is no longer here, I feel his spirit every day. My dad taught me three main lessons that I want to share with you.
First, education is of utmost importance. Second, kindness is contagious and it must be practiced. Third, everyone has one of the following; time, talent, or treasure to share. Helping others is the primary purpose of life. In whatever capacity that might be, everyone has the ability to serve.
The “E” in OEC represents part of the mission of OEC and that is to Excel. In our vision to excel all students will have the skills needed to positively impact society. At OEC, we are preparing students to do just this by participating in service projects like our most recent one where students fed the homeless on Dr. King’s birthday.
This is my first year as principal at OEC. Previously, I taught high school English and served as an administrator in Newark, New Jersey. My former supervisor, Principal Sam Garrison of Camden Street School, taught me that anything is possible if you dream big. He always put children first and served as a valuable mentor to me. Without my dad, Mr. Garrison, and countless others, I would not be at OEC.
I am both grateful and proud to be a part of the OEC Family. We are constantly looking for community partners, volunteers, and collaborators to provide resources, opportunities, and exposure to a variety of careers for our students. Students and families at OEC deserve the best and my goal is to help provide as many opportunities as possible to ensure this happens.
Students cannot achieve our literacy goals and their own instructional and personal goals in all subjects and in life without a guide, mentor, or coach. I urge all family and community members who are currently in this position to take it seriously. Students at OEC need you! There is no place like OEC. Our unique population of students are amazing young people who have incredibly bright futures ahead of them.
We need your help! Come in and give your time, talent, or treasure to us and you will not regret it. I guarantee it. At OEC, our mission is the following: we OWN our actions, we EXCEL, and we CARE for all. Show that you indeed CARE and I urge you to be a part of the OEC family and our continuing journey to providing students everything they need to transform their dreams into reality.
With Gratitude and Best Wishes,