by Mercedes Peters
At Metropolitan Arts & Technology High School, a relatively new addition to the Bayview, senior students are busy preparing for their journey to college. Two such seniors, Tai Britton and Carlos Rodriguez Perez, both from the Bayview, are anxiously awaiting news of their college acceptances.
Britton, a bright young woman who plans to study either mechanical or aerospace engineering, is waiting to hear from the University of Texas, UCLA, UC Davis, UC San Diego, Texas Tech, Stanford, Ohio State and Baylor. When asked how her time at Metro has prepared her for success at such prestigious universities, Tai states that Metro has made her “more analytical and a better researcher. Rather than just reading information from a textbook, Metro has taught me how to think.”
Similarly, Perez, a gifted member of Metro’s basketball team, is awaiting news from CSU Sacramento, SF State, Cal Poly Pomona, UC Berkeley, UC Davis and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. He is planning to study architecture at one of these schools and feels that the supportive and caring teachers and staff at Metro have taught him how to live up to his potential and be academically responsible for himself – lessons that will undoubtedly serve him well in college.
Metro’s principal, Nick Kappelhof, who often encounters families who are unfamiliar with Metro, hopes that more students, families and community leaders from the Bayview will take the opportunity to learn more about the school. “We desire to be more deeply rooted in our community and would love to have more students, community leaders and families come to visit us.
“Since we have such a high focus on college preparation, at times families think that we only accept students who are already highly academically successful. In reality, we are open to students of all educational levels, and our mission is to provide a personalized college prep experience for students of all abilities.”
Metro’s mission is the same of that of its umbrella organization, Envision Education, a charter school management organization that houses one other school in San Francisco, City Arts & Tech (CAT), and two in the East Bay, Impact Academy and Envision Academy. Metro, like all four Envision schools, follows a unique educational model that focuses on four key “Rs”: Rigorous expectations of students, personalized Relationships between teachers and students, Relevant and applicable curriculum, and high student achievement Results.
This focus is paying off at Metro; each year its graduation rate is over 90 percent, and last year 100 percent of its graduates went on to attend either a two-year or four-year college. Principal Kappelhof’s goal for his school is for such success to continue while Metro grows to eventually house 450 students.
Metro’s principal, Nick Kappelhof, hopes that more students, families and community leaders from the Bayview will take the opportunity to learn more about the school. “We desire to be more deeply rooted in our community and would love to have more students, community leaders and families come to visit us.”
Even at maximum capacity, Kappelhof is dedicated to ensuring that students will continue to get the support that they need. Says Kappelhof, “Our school is designed for students who either want to or need to establish close relationships with adults in the school community. We provide our students with lots of academic and social support in order for them to succeed.”
This one-on-one focus on student achievement does not go unnoticed by students nor their parents. Metro parents often express thankfulness on the individual attention that their children receive. Says Perez, “My favorite thing about Metro is how much they care. They don’t let you slip, even if they want to.” Hopefully, for Britton and Perez, along with all of Metro’s current seniors, this high level of staff dedication will result in many college acceptances and scholarships.
Metro is located at 1195 Hudson Ave., in Hunters Point, San Francisco, and is currently accepting applications. Interested families and community leaders can find out more about Metro by attending its next Information Session on Feb. 12 at 6 p.m., by visiting its website, www.es-metro.org, or by calling (415) 550-5920.