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Photof of Johnson students in the Friday Kahlo after-school program posing with art they crreated

$3 million grant will make Bensenville schools ‘places where everyone belongs.’

Over the next five years, Bensenville schools will receive $3 million to fund critical community schools initiatives through the Illinois State Board of Education’s 21st Century Community Learning Centers grants program.

What are community schools?

"They’re schools that reach out to the entire community, making them places where everyone belongs," said Dr. James Stelter, District 2 Superintendent of Schools. "They’re not only places where students get an education. Families are also there, getting the services and resources they need to succeed, too. They’re incredibly valuable assets for the entire community."

In Bensenville, these community schools will be known as RISE Academies, with RISE standing for Resources Invested in Community Enrichment. This grant will provide $150,000 a year for the next five years to fund RISE Academies at each of Bensenville School District 2’s three schools and at Fenton High School.

Their programming will focus on such topics as ...

  • Academic Enrichment
  • Arts Integration
  • Technology
  • Social-Emotional Learning
  • College and Career Readiness
  • Parent and Family Programming

District 2 and Fenton are partnering with the Frida Kahlo Community Organization to operate the RISE Academies. The Frida Kahlo Community Organization has many years of experience providing similar programs for Chicago Public Schools, and has already offered several after-school arts and dance classes for BSD2 students over the past two years. 

In addition to Frida Kahlo,seven other community-based organizations have also signed on to provide programming for the RISE Academies. Those partners include College of DuPage, Metropolitan Family Services’ DuPage Center, Bensenville Community Public Library, Mindful Practices, Columbia College of Chicago’s Department of Science & Mathematics’ “Scientists for Tomorrow” Program, University of Chicago’s Logan Center for the Arts, and Learning Dimensions.