We prepare our students for the world in which they live by teaching them to talk, work, and respect those across lines of difference. Across America, schools are more segregated today than in the 1960s. This particularly rings true for schools in St. Louis, as segregation in schools is closely tied to segregation in housing patterns and attendance zone lines. Research over the past 50 years suggests that racial and socioeconomic integration is one of the best design principles for a successful school. Diverse schools produce high results for students and society, and research shows all students benefit from learning in a diverse environment. By creating an intentionally diverse elementary school, Atlas’ staff and student population reflects the diversity of our city across race, income, and cultural backgrounds. Our facility’s centralized location allows us to serve a diverse group of families who reside in and around the Central Corridor.
However, our commitment to diversity extends beyond recruitment to our Anti-Bias, Anti-Racist (ABAR) approach to curriculum and instruction, school-wide practices that promote equity, and ongoing professional development for our team. Ultimately, we foster a diverse, inclusive, and equitable community that 1) serves as a model of what is possible in schools, businesses, and organizations throughout the St. Louis region, 2) prepares Atlas students to become allies, champions, and change makers who are prepared with the skills and conviction needed to be effective leaders for equity throughout the city, and 3) works together to accomplish our school’s mission and long-term vision.