Memphis Model

The Memphis Model” — a unique partnership of a major university, a large urban school district and a community foundation. The partners are the University of Memphis (24,000 student), Shelby County School System (110,000 students) and Peer Power.  It also combines market-based approaches with youth empowerment and educational practices. Peer Power, which targets schools in neighborhoods of deep poverty, It began in two schools and has grown to involve students from across the city and in neighboring Mississippi. More than 12,000 students have taken part.

The results have been impressive. In one school, pass rates on standardized tests rose from 37 percent to 91 percent for students in the program. Such gains, officials say, are consistent across the program’s locations. ACT scores for participants in the program have increased by an average of 3.3 points. At East High, whose middle school feeders are among state’s lowest performers, Peer Power participants scored in the 55th percentile among all Tennessee students in Biology; nonparticipants at East scored in the 13th percentile. Likewise, in English II Peer Power scholars ranked in the 57th percentile statewide, compared to the 12th percentile for nonparticipants.

Life is a competitive sport.

Tutor

Deidra M. Sanders

At age fifteen, I was introduced to Mr. Charles McVean and the Peer Power Foundation.  Peer Power provided my first job as well as endless opportunities throughout high school and college.  The Foundation set very high standards for me as a student, a tutor, and leader.  Peer Power taught me the value of not only excelling academically, but how to be a model citizen and consistently improve the whole person.  Through Peer Power, I learned the value of helping others and how to give back to the community in other ways.  Throughout my four years at Georgetown, I have made it my goal to give back to the community.  The high expectations set by Peer Power have aided me in achieving my goals in receiving a dual degree in International Politics and International Economics.  I will soon start a career in government sciences.  I know that I would not have made it this far without the direction given to me from Peer Power.