Our Story

GRSEPN, Grand Rapids Southeast Promise Neighborhood Project is one of 8 Promise Neighborhood grants awarded by the U.S. Department of Education in 2021. Under the direction of Western Michigan University Faculty, Dr. Patricia Reeves and Dr. Jianping Shen, the GRSEPN grant was written to target the southeast quadrant of Grand Rapids, Michigan. The project consists of a partnership between various organizations and Grand Rapids Public Schools, focused on enhancing and providing resources in the following key areas:

Early Childhood Development: developmental screening, language & motor development, quality 3 & 4 year old preschool programs, parent education

Family & Community Engagement/Support: navigation systems, healthy nutrition, substance abuse prevention, school engagement

Learning Readiness: social-emotional learning & development, resilience & persistence, attendance & engagement, trauma response, safety & well-being

Academic Success: K-12 literacy, K-12 Math (including 8th grade algebra), teacher/leader development & shared ownership, aligned systems, processes & resources, successful school transitions, extended day learning opportunities, summer learning opportunities and math, successful school transitions, high school completion

College & Career Readiness: career explorations, college & workplace competencies, college & certificate program enrollments, degree & certificate completion, job placement 

Along with our community partners and stakeholders, we implement a coordinated and aligned system of evidence-based strategies to provide students with a high quality, equity-producing, birth-to-career educational experience. From 2022-2026, we will work with our evaluation partners to measure the impact and efficacy of our work to achieve two key outcomes:

  • Growth and equity in student learning opportunity and outcomes 
  • Increased parent and family supports

Who are GRSEPN Partners?

  • Grand Rapids Public Schools
  • Kent Intermediate School District
  • Western Michigan University Center for School Renewal-High Impact Leadership School Renewal Project
  • Baxter Community Center
  • Early Learning Neighborhood Collaborative (ELNC)
  • Family Futures
  • Grand Rapids Community College
  • LINC Up of Grand Rapids
  • YMCA
  • United Methodist Community House

What is the Catchment Area?

GRSEPN supports the neighborhoods in the Southeast side of Grand Rapids. At the heart of our GRSEPN are our schools.

Schools within the GRSEPN:

  1. Ottawa Hills High School (9-12)
  2. University Preparatory Academy (6-12)
  3. Alger Middle School (6-8)
  4. Brookside Elementary School (PK-5)
  5. Campus Elementary School (PK-5)
  6. Congress Elementary School (PK-5)
  7. Dickinson Academy (PK-8)
  8. Gerald R. Ford Academic Center (PK-8)
  9. Ken-O-Sha Elementary School (PK-5)
  10. Martin Luther King Jr. Leadership Academy (PK-8)
  11. Mulick Park Elementary School (PK-5)
  12. Ridgemoor Park Montessori Academy (PK-6)
  13. Sherwood Park Global Studies Academy (PK-6: IB)

Our Promise Neighborhood Partners