LeBron James continues to demonstrate his commitment to his hometown of Akron, Ohio, recently announcing plans to launch a school for children at risk of being left behind.

The LeBron James Family Foundation has teamed up with the Akron Public Schools to design and launch the “I Promise School” in the fall of 2018.

Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James warms up before an NBA basketball game against the Chicago Bulls Thursday, March 30, 2017, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

“This school is so important to me because our vision is to create a place for the kids in Akron who need it most—those that could fall through the cracks if we don’t do something,” James told the Associated Press.

The school will provide a STEM-based, wraparound curriculum that will draw on the research, interventions and family-based philosophy the foundation has practiced through James’ “I PROMISE” program, which has supported approximately 1,100 children over the past six years.

“We’ve learned over the years what works and what motivates them, and now we can bring all of that together in one place along with the right resources and experts,” James said. “If we get to them early enough, we can hopefully keep them on the right track to a bigger and brighter future for themselves and their families.”

The school will first focus on children in the third and fourth grades, but plans to accommodate students from grades one through eight by the year 2022. Committees composed of local leaders, educators, parents and experts will help guide the creation of the institution.

“We are excited about the potential of the I Promise School to provide specialized programming and invaluable resources for our students,” said David James, superintendent of Akron’s Public Schools. “We’ve seen the positive influence of the LeBron James Family Foundation on our students and we look forward to continuing to do everything we can to put our students in a position to be successful.”

See the announcement here.


Zenitha Prince

Special to the AFRO