5 Celebrities Supporting Charter Schools in 2018

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Collage of 2018 celebrity charter school supporters: Earl Monroe, Diddy, Madonna, Lamarr Woodley, Zoe Saldana

In an action packed year fueled by ever-growing support of public charter schools, a variety of high-profile individuals voiced their support to ensure students have access to a high-quality education. The voices behind the movement this year included some of biggest names in sports and entertainment.

Let’s look back at some of the top celebrity headlines within the charter school movement this year!

1. More Than A Hoop Dream: Earl Monroe Aims Above the Rim with Charter School

Most sports fans remember Earl “The Pearl” Monroe for his dominating ball handling and fast breaks to the hoop, and now he’s sharing his love for the game with the creation of a basketball-themed charter school. The Lewis Katz New Renaissance Basketball Academy Charter School is scheduled to open in the fall of 2020 in the Bronx. Hear why this Hall of Fame basketball legend wanted to create a charter school.

2. LaMarr Woodley Gives Back to Hometown with New Charter School

Super Bowl champion and former Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker LaMarr Woodley made headlines when he announced that he was opening a charter school in his hometown. The Woodley Leadership Academy was the Michigan All-American‘s way to give back to his community.

3. Diddy Pledges $1 Million to Bronx Charter School

Diddy’s generosity once again shocked the charter school world with an announcement that he would pledge $1 million to Capital Preparatory Schools to help set up a new location for school in the Bronx. The charter academies founder Dr. Steve Perry called Diddy’s act of kindness “motivating.”

4. Zoe Saldana Tweets in Support of Charter School in California

Entertainment company BESE, highlighted Crete Academy and its founder Hattie Mitchell were highlighted in a piece entitled “Living on The Line,” as part of their Sea of Change series highlighting important social issues in society. Actress and BESE founder Zoe Saldana tweeted in support of this charter school that’s specifically designed to serve the needs of children experiencing poverty and homelessness.

5. Madonna Pledges $100,000 and Funding Match to Help Detroit Charter School Secure New Facility

Detroit Prep issued a challenge to the community to raise money for a new school facility. Popstar Madonna answered the elementary school’s call by pledging $100,000 and asking fans to help donate to the school’s $2 million capital campaign.


Kelsey Nelson is the manager of campaigns and publications at the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools.


See other posts in our 2018 in Review series:


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December 11, 2019 - 09:35am
Teacher - Will…

Hello, my name is Will. I am a Technology and Science teacher at a charter school in Paterson, New Jersey. I would like to know how I can reach out to any benefactors who would be willing to help me help our charter school to build their technology base which would help the students achieve higher test scores and academics.
Right now we are limited on teacher printers and do not have a computer lab. We are also limited on chromebooks for our students. The budget can't afford Smartboards, and there are Apps such as IXL and IRead that would help build student achievement.