Everybody knows the phenomenon: a couple that loves city life relocates to the suburbs as soon as their first child is born, citing back yards and school systems. Philadelphia can't do much about the former, but it is trying its best with the latter. Schools in a new "Center City Region
" (extending to Poplar and Washington, beyond the traditional CC boundaries) is due for some pumping up to help retain professional couples and others looking to better their children's futures:
Some changes will be cosmetic, such as catchy Web sites and improved lighting and landscaping to give the schools "curb appeal," as one executive calls it. But new educational programs and community partnerships are also in the making.
"This is looking at capturing and preserving and creating a middle class in Center City Philadelphia," said School Reform Commission chairman James Nevels.
Chinese language classes will be added to the Chinatown highschool; gifted programs and magnet schools will be added; charter schools will be co-run with the Constitution Center and other cultural institutions. Great ideas for more than just the tony center of town. Best of luck to them and the city generally.