Jurate Krokys, CEO of Independence Charter School in Philadelphia, discusses some of her school’s unique programs, such as requiring all children to learn a second language and to complete global studies. For example in fifth grade, students study slavery, the Civil War, and civil rights, followed by a study of similar challenges in Afghanistan and South Africa.


Jurate Krokys is the Founding Principal and the current CEO of Independence Charter School. Independence Charter is a K-8 school in Philadelphia’s center city bringing students from 46 zip codes through a lottery to a school where global education and second and third language acquisition is the norm. Starting in Kindergarten through 8th grade, the students study about the world, its people, cultures and histories, challenges, conflicts and successes. Through this process, the children also learn how to be better people, better citizens locally and globally. Jurate has been an urban educator for over 30 years first in the Private then Public Schools. She was a Fulbright Scholar to the Republic of Lithuania in 1992-1993 and worked with educators and leaders in a post-Soviet nation while her children attended local schools.

Quote:“It is a blessing to be able to work with a team of amazing educators on a daily basis committed to the excellence and the potential of all of our students, no matter what their challenge, no matter what their gift.”