Volunteers help the Academy of Warren to put a new face to their charter school

WARREN, MI – On August 10th through the 14th over 100 volunteers will be working at the Academy of Warren to help remodel their currently run-down facilities. With the help of 200 gallons of paint donated from MASCO, the staff of CS Partners, an anonymous $100,000 donation and help of parents, teachers and supporters ­– the school will be getting a major facelift next week.

The school building, located near the intersection of 8 Mile and Schoenher, was authorized by Bay Mills Community College in 2005.  The original founders remolded the old Farmer Jack’s and Frank’s Nursery buildings on the site. “Our students deserve a school building that is clean, functional and safe. And with the generous help of many organizations and volunteers, our school community is going have it when they return to the classrooms next month” said Executive Director, Eric Graves.   “The building has been vandalized many times and is badly in need of repairs, and unfortunately, there is no public funding available for buildings and maintenance for charter schools.”

The Academy of Warren, where over 90% of attending students come from low-income families, is in need of additional supplies and monetary donations to help with their end-of-summer remodeling project entitled, “Fresh Start New Beginnings, A September to Remember.”  The building location is in a very poor area of Warren that borders an equally poor, blighted section of Detroit. The school outperforms the majority of their neighboring schools, and is crucial to the students in the area who are desperate for a better choice and quality education. This renovation is important in allowing for these underprivileged students return to school with a fresh, clean environment.

Partners and sponsors are still needed, if you would like to make a monetary or supplies donation, or if you just wish to sign up to volunteer, please contact Renae or Todd at 810-229-5145 or tdryer@charterschoolpartners.com/ rbehr@charterschoolpartners.com.

CS Partners has been working with charter schools in Michigan since 1996 offering high quality diverse choices for parents in order to serve the unique needs of every child in urban, rural and suburban areas in Michigan.  Value is placed on partnerships with schools, parents, students, boards of directors, authorizers and others working with charter schools, trying to make a difference in the lives of children every day.  More information about CS Partners can be found at www.charterschoolpartners.com.

Academy of Warren offers free tuition, all day kindergarten, breakfast and lunch programs, extended programs, athletics, computer lab and library. Limited spaces are available for kindergarten through eighth grade.   For more information contact the school at (586) 552-8010 or visit their website http://www.academyofwarren.net

Dear CSA District Families


During Christmas Break, GEMS, the CSPA High School Robotics team, was involved in the nationwide unveiling of the FIRST Robotics game for the 2015 season: Recycle Rush. The objective is to create a robot that can stack totes on top of each other, place recycling bins on top of the tote stack and then place material to be recycled (pool noodles in this case) into the recycling bins. A video explanation of the game can be viewed here.


The nature of the tasks required determined how our team planned, designed and built their robot. The team’s goal was to do all this at a level high enough to win their two local district competitions and qualify for the State First Robotics tournament to be held in Grand Rapids over Spring Break.


Our Robotics team set extremely high expectations for themselves. During the winter, they built their Robot in the ASI Workholding shop in Howell. This is the fourth year that CSPA High School has had a Robotics team and the fourth year that team has been sponsored by ASI. We are grateful to ASI Workholding for their sponsorship and the mentorship that Allen Patterson, owner of ASI, has provided for our team. Over the past four years, the use of his shop and his mentoring has allowed our team to become very successful.


The twenty members of our 2015 GEMS Robotics team are:


Brian Ambrose

Olivia McClellan

Josh Arking

Alexis McClellan

Karsen Biebel

Nick Mead

Grace Brenner

Dustin Newman

Nathan Craig

Andrew O’Doherty

Johnny Gary

Madelyn Offer

Mikey Gasiorowski

Owen Poloski

Mary Kostesich

Garrett Rutherford

Xena Lackomar

Nathan Schleh

Cameron McClusky

Jacob Viculis




Under the direction of our Team’s mentors Steve Ambrose, Carol Brenner, Scott Craig, Roger Day, James Garrett Sr. and Lauren Schleh, and CSPA High School teacher Kathy Revenaugh who contributed her experience with mathematics and technology, our team developed a working robot that can not only complete the task but do it at level high enough to compete with area schools that are significantly larger in size and robotics budget.  


Our Robotics team competed in two district competitions. The first was held at Parker Middle School in Howell on February 25-28. Our school was the smallest school at the competition and our team placed first among the forty teams present! They came home with a winner banner that is now proudly displayed in the high school entry way. When the season is over, their banner will hang in the CSA gymnasium as a historical record of this amazing win.


The second district completion was March 25-28 at Churchill High School in Livonia, considered the most competitive district competition in the state. Reflecting on their amazing outcome in Howell, our team was confident that they could earn enough points in Livonia to win a berth at the state championships. Again we were the smallest school in the competition but our Gems Robotic team finished strong – fifth out of the forty teams present! And they earned enough points to move on to the state championship!


Our GEMS Robotics team is a great example of what we value at CSPA. The robot was designed and built by our students. They used their individual talents and collaboration skills to build a robot that is quite likely capable of placing at the world championships. What our student lacked in materials, they made up in creativity and hard work. Over the past eight weeks, they displayed an unbelievable amount of passion and invested countless hours. Their payoff was an outstanding showing at the two district competitions and a berth in the state championship at Grand Rapids. Just before Spring break we held a school wide parade as a send-off for our team to the State competition.


At the State completion over Spring Break, going into the finals, our Gems were the Captains of the 15th placed alliance. They finished the competition in 11th place and for the second straight season, earned a spot at the world competition. Let’s put this into perspective: Of the 325 robotics teams in the state, our team placed 11th. Truly amazing!  




GEMS leaves today to travel to the FIRST Robotics World Championship that is being held at the Edward D. Jones Stadium in St. Louis April 22-25. At the beginning of the season, the team set a goal to not just go to Worlds but to place at Worlds. Our team has a good chance of achieving that goal.


For me, the best part of robotics is the inter-team collaboration. Even though each individual school wants to win, all the teams work together to get everyone’s robots working properly prior to the competition. The support that our students get from our mentors and all the other coaches in the area have helped them not only learn at a higher level but build the social networks so necessary as they become adults and enter the work force.


Our students love robotics and being part of this special program. The team is always looking for sponsors and business partners. If you or your business can sponsor our robotics program, you could join the GEMS nation. Please consider helping our state qualifying robotics team by sponsoring this amazing group of students. You can get an idea of what it’s all about from this video the team prepared last season.


Go GEMS!  


In partnership with you,

Mr. Beyer