Derince is one of the young men I admire most for perseverance.
When he was just seven years old, his father was arrested. Instantly, he became the ‘man’ of the house, wrestling with concerns few adults manage. With no male role models at home, God graciously provided men to mentor and advocate for Derince. They saw he was not receiving the attention he needed in public school.
Derince applied to Hope Academy in 9th grade, but was denied admission. Because Derince’s previous schools failed him academically he worked relentlessly with a tutor for one whole year, and was admitted to Hope as a sophomore. “When I found out I got into Hope Academy, I had this joy in my heart,” explains Derince. “I wanted to jump up and down, but instead I just played it cool. I was so happy I got in.”
In the last year and a half, Derince has become a learner and a leader. He has sought good friends to sharpen him. He respects his football coaches for their athletic and spiritual advice. He is growing and giving. “My belief is that, when I’m going through something difficult, as long as I believe in Christ, I can get through it,” he says.
Praise God for his relentless love for Derince, and for each one of our students. He is rebuilding our city, one heart at a time.
Other students like Derince also need need partners for this school year. Please join us in praying for God’s provision for the youth of our city, and considering how God might use you to administer his grace.
With deep joy,
Russ Gregg | Head of School
It’s an exciting time at Hope Academy! Last week, we opened our doors wide to 435 students (and counting!) – nearly 70 of whom are Kindergarteners this year.
Over the past fifteen years, we’ve seen that “oaks of righteousness” do not grow overnight. Rather, they start by planting tiny acorns, in good soil.
Then, it takes years for this little acorn to grow deeper and wider roots. Roots that will draw refreshment in the harshest droughts; roots that will anchor this tree in the most tumultuous storms.
That is why our hearts are full of joy – and faith – this year as we double our Kindergarten from 2 classes to 4. We are thrilled to widen our admissions funnel and offer a remarkable, God-centered education to more and more families, K-12.
Thank you, for your help in reaching more “acorns” in our quest to grow “oaks of righteousness,” right here in the inner-city.
Pray that God will continue to grow our students into servant leaders who will work for justice, economic opportunity, racial harmony, hope for the family, and joy in the community.
Head of School