Our Story

KIPP Delta History

KIPP Delta History

KIPP Delta’s story began in 2002 in Helena, Arkansas where we opened the doors of our first middle school, KIPP Delta College Preparatory School, to 65 students in fifth grade. Our goal was to graduate students with the strength of character and academic abilities needed to succeed in life – and in so doing, to prove what is possible in public education. We promised to do whatever was necessary to help our students succeed, and we asked them, and their parents, to make similarly rigorous commitments.

Fourteen years later, KIPP Delta is still making – and keeping – the same promises. KIPP Delta has grown to serve over 1,400 students and over 190 alumni. We now have six schools serving the Helena, Blytheville, and Forrest City areas: KIPP Delta Elementary Literacy Academy, KIPP Delta College Preparatory School, KIPP Delta Collegiate High School, KIPP Blytheville College Preparatory School, KIPP Blytheville Collegiate High School, and KIPP Forrest City College Preparatory School.

The logo for KIPP Delta is a triangle, the fourth letter of the Greek alphabet and the mathematical symbol for change, with a river running through it. It was with this promise of change that we knocked on doors offering a new, and often unsought, path to college.

Expansion & Growth Plans

Each year, the number of students seeking enrollment in our schools grows. We will continue to expand our schools to serve more students and open schools in more communities with students in academic need.

Perspectives

Evan and I met the first week of college at St. Michael’s College in Vermont. After college, we lived in Uganda. From there, Evan felt compelled to apply for Teach for America. I had studied KIPP in my education-focused psychology classes in college. Evan requested the Delta region, and five years later, it is our students and the Blytheville community that keep us here. 

During our time here, we wanted to take the students on an international service trip. We were met with nothing but enthusiasm from co-workers, managers, and parents. That support continues to motivate us to do more! 

We’ve each had different roles at KIPP Delta. For me, it was grant writing; for Evan it was straight in to teaching. Now we will both serve on the KIPP Through College team, as we are both drawn to hands-on time with students. KTC is a team that aims to improve educational opportunities for our students. As advisors, Evan and I hope to provide the type of college advising we didn’t get, and this is very rewarding. To see our students grow, and to play a role in increasing the breadth of their experiences, is a joy. Working with like-minded people who share in a common mission also helps you get through the tougher days. 

I feel the happiest when I get to share the things I love with the people I love. At KIPP, I get to do that every day. Here, ideas are encouraged! 

Mr. and Mrs. Evan Dewey were the recipients of this year’s Beyond Z award in Blytheville. The award honors staff, students, and families that have gone above and beyond to support the students at KIPP Delta.

Ja'Kara Mills

Since I have been at KIPP, I have improved in both my academic fields and my ability to work with others. KIPP has given me a lot of opportunities to better myself during school and outside of school. Teachers are respectful, helpful, and willing to work with those who struggle with anything.

KIPP has many positives, but what I like most about being a part of this Team and Family are the numerous advantages that I wouldn’t get at another school. At KIPP, we are well-prepared for college and get more assistance with applying for admission and financial aid.

For alumni in college, KIPP made a difference in their lives because our schools helped them develop study habits, the skills to turn assignments in on time, and also the ability to work with others without any problems.

As for me, my college plans are to attend Duke University. I want to graduate with a degree in criminal justice. I will then attend Duke’s law school, and be on my way to owning my own law firm. KIPP can help me get there by continuing to tighten down on rules when I’m in the wrong, and keeping me on track to achieve my lifelong dream.

Hello, my name is Jervoire Hardin, and I’m proud to say my son Elijah is in his second year at KIPP Forrest City College Preparatory School. I’ve always wanted to be as involved as possible in my son’s life. Like Frederick Douglass said, “It’s easier to build a strong child than to fix a broken man. KIPP Forrest City sees this, and that’s why they are always inviting parents in and communicating what they need. They want us there to help. I’ve gotten involved by becoming the school photographer, organizing a dance, and planning pie-in-the-face day. I want to plan a carnival soon, too! I think being a male parental figure is something that is helpful for all the students.

I love that KIPP communicates with families and students about behavior and social skills. Elijah is learning strategies that will help him solve any problem that arises in his life. His teachers are teaching him to dig deep into the root of any problem he may have. I’m also just so impressed with the time KIPP teachers take to make sure students learn. They don’t rush! My wife and I appreciate that the teachers make sure all kids “get it.” KIPP Forrest City teachers look for proficiency and understanding, not just teaching.

I’ll admit I didn’t have high expectations in the beginning. But everything with the school has been awesome! Because I can talk to the staff, so much of my worry about the future has been erased. Every time I come up to KIPP, I can see Elijah reaching his goals. Thank you!