ROCKFORD (WREX) – The first day of school is a new beginning. It is also a way for students and parents to learn what the year will bring them. This is why Kikifer’s Entrepreneurial Academy offered the students a musical welcome for the first day.
School board co-founder and executive director Keishonda Williamson says she wanted to show students and parents the village it takes to raise a child.
“We can put water on these seeds and see how they come out of the ground,” said a community leader speaking at the morning assembly.
KEA shows its students that people like them are there, investing and supporting their success.
All the students of KEA repeated and shouted the school oath: “I am wise! I am beautiful !
“They are literally our future. Twenty years from now they will be ruling this city, this state, this country,” said Williamson. “If we don’t pour into it now, if we don’t pour into it today, then we have no reason to complain about what our future holds.”
The black-owned private school may just have opened in 2019, but each year enrollments are skyrocketing. So much so that the school had three different locations to accommodate space and even added a virtual school for students across the country.
“I thought we would stay on top of our beauty store for a year or two,” Williamson said, thinking of where the school started. “Watching us grow to the point where we can hire staff and have the staff now implement the program into the system is wonderful, it’s great. It gives me chills to think about where we can be in two years. “
Two Rockford hip-hop artists wanted to show kids that hard work pays off even when faced with challenges.
“For me it’s just like a warm feeling. Like I’m sitting in those same chairs at some point,” Evan B3E said with JoAnZ & B3E.
“A rose can bloom in the dark, a flower can bloom in the dark,” said KJ JoAnz with JoAnz & B3E. “Show them that Rockford and Milwaukee are two towns where [there’s] lots of rough diamonds and all you have to do is find them. “
Kikifer’s is committed to finding and developing these diamonds in anything they want to do in life.
“To have 80 authors published in this community, all under the age of 18, that will be revolutionary,” said Williamson.
KEA received the Illinois State Board of Education Seal of Approval last April. This school will participate in IHSA sports for the first time this fall.