Irene Hall, Co-founder & Co-leader of Discovery Charter School in Newark, discusses some of the many challenges she faces each day. For example, many of the children come in with very little background knowledge, having limited if any exposure to the world outside of Newark. One factor contributing to the school’s success is family involvement. “We consider our families our partners.”Discovery Charter School seeks to involve families as much as possible, through events like a trip to the museum. Afterwards parents and children could both discuss what they’d experienced. “We set up a culture of learning in the home.” Another point of difference for the school is mixed grade classes, such as a reading class that includes grades four through eight. “We find the mix really important to what we do and we would never give it up.”

Co-founder and Co-leader of Discovery Charter, Dr. Irene Hall earned her doctorate in Education from Harvard University, has over 30 years of experience in the education field, and was integral in establishing Discovery Charter School in Newark, New Jersey. Dr. Hall currently teaches and develops curriculum at the school. She also teaches new teachers through New Jersey’s Provisional Teacher Program at Rutgers University. She strongly believes in developing positive, respectful relationships with students and families, multi-age grouping, and the mutuality of both discipline and creativity in the learning environment. At her school, she hopes her students graduate with an attitude of respect for others, a curiosity about the world, and an eagerness to embrace challenges.

Quote: “In order to feel pride in oneself, you must do something to be proud of.”