First day of school for 1st Philadelphia Prep

PHILADELPHIA - August 10, 2011

If your child is groaning about having to start school before Labor Day, tell them about the First Philadelphia Preparatory Charter School in Bridesburg.

Wednesday was the first day of school for the students at First Philadelphia Preparatory Charter School.

"I was actually happy, because I miss my friends, and I just want to see everyone and enjoy a great year in 7th grade," said Dom Santo.

The charter school uses an unconventional school calendar with longer breaks during the winter and spring holidays, and a shorter summer break; only six weeks.

Studies have proven that this type of schedule allows students to retain more and forget less.

"Research has proven that there is a loss when students come back," said Josephine Arcaro. "And not only do they experience the loss, teachers spend a lot of your initial time getting them back into the routine of things.

Marleen Volpe has been teaching for 20 years, and says the difference in learning this way, is obvious.

"They'll pick up their reading and their math like they finished it yesterday. They'll just continue," says Marleen Volpe, which makes her job easier.

Even if some have mixed feelings about this early start in August, look at it this way: First Philadelphia Prep Charter gets 19 days off for the winter holidays, and their school year ends on June 15th.

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