Center School, based in Abington, has educated and supported thousands of children since opening its doors in 1989.
Their alumni are strong and passionate about Center School and the difference it has made in their lives. Alumna Jenna Arnold, the author of the bestselling book Raising our Hands, recently returned to Center School for a visit and reflected on her time there.
Jenna shared, “Recently, I had the pleasure of visiting Center School and witnessing the incredible work that happens here. But, this wasn’t new to me. As an alumna of Center School, I have experienced firsthand the amazing work — and results — that happens when a struggling student receives a Center School education and the positive impact it can have on their future.”
She continued, “My journey began as a young elementary school child struggling to read and write. Every day was hard. My family recognized that I needed more and began to research educational options. This is when they found Center School, and very quickly, my parents knew it was the right fit for my learning style. With the support of experienced and dedicated teachers, I was taught strategies to learn how to read. I developed self-advocacy skills, and above all, I was taught to understand who I was as a learner. These invaluable skills supported my successful transition from Center School. I went on to graduate from Columbia University’s Teacher College and studied astrophysics at the University of Miami. Today, I am an author, educator, entrepreneur, activist, and mother. I recently published my first book, and as my mom continues to comment — at one point, she didn’t think I’d be able to read yet alone deliver a bestselling book. I never imagined my life would be so very different from the child who couldn’t read and write when I entered Center School to having a successful and rewarding career.”
Jenna served as a Chief Impact Officer for Rethink and Co-Founded ORGANIZE, a nonprofit focused on ending the waitlist for organ transplants. She was fortunate to be named as one of Oprah’s “100 Awakened Leaders who are using their voice and talent to elevate humanity.” Jenna shared: “I genuinely believe that without the foundation of a Center School education and the people who generously support it, I would not have achieved these amazing successes.”
Center School has thousands of testimonials just like this from other alumni. Mindy Wawrzyniak, Head of School, expressed, “Sharing the stories of our alumni reinforces our mission. We are here to support and educate children who learn differently and show them that they have the capability to shape their future to experience amazing success.”