As a Japanese Language Cluster school, Jonathan Burr Elementary School serves students from across the city. The school staff and parent volunteers work hard to create a warm, welcoming environment for their students, some of whom travel an hour each way to attend school. Despite the school’s limited resources, the students are exposed to not only a wide range of Japanese language and cultural immersion activities in their classes, but academic support and extracurricular opportunities beyond the school day as well.
Chicago Cares has had the pleasure of partnering with Burr for more than 10 years to help with facility improvements and beautification projects, but our scholastically focused ongoing programs just started in 2011. When developing ongoing programs for the students at Burr, Principal William Klee expressed his goal of creating a community for their families that creates excitement and engagement in learning both inside and outside of the classroom. Additionally, he wanted to provide options that fill some gaps left by limited school budgets to ensure that students at Burr may encounter a variety of people, activities, and opportunities that keep them energized about education.
With the mission of Burr in mind, Chicago Cares facilitates three programs that support both the scholastic and extracurricular achievement of our participants. Read-with-Me at Burr helps students build confidence in reading and promotes positive attitudes toward general academic success from a young age. While Burr has a strong program during the school day that focuses on fine-art skills and art history, the students expressed an interest in more opportunities for individual expression. Arts & Crafts at Burr aims to provide these opportunities to the students by allowing them to create unique and interesting crafts of which they can be proud. Lastly, Burr does not have a physical education teacher on staff, and the students have limited opportunities for play during the day. Burr Sports Club helps fill that need with an hour of group games and free gym time that build cooperation and teamwork while providing students with new things to try.
Help support the great work at Burr School by joining us at a program soon!