Mission and History
All Perspectives Charter Schools will provide students with a rigorous and relevant education, based on the ethical principles of A Disciplined Life®, preparing them for life in a changing world and helping them further become intellectually reflective, caring and ethical people engaged in a meaningful life.
Perspectives was launched in 1993 by two Chicago Public School teachers who believed that character development and academic achievement are interrelated. They created a curriculum called A Disciplined Life and started a “school within a school” at Dyett Middle School on Chicago’s South Side. In 1997, Perspectives Charter Schools became one of the first charter schools in Illinois. By 2004, Perspectives had attracted enough attention and supporters to move into an award-winning new building designed by Perkins + Will, now known as Perspectives Rodney D. Joslin Campus.
In 2005, after 8 years of steady expansion of enrollment and with Joslin students reaching ever higher rates of academic growth each year, Perspectives was persuaded by Mayor Richard J. Daley, then-CEO of Chicago Public Schools Arne Duncan and the Greater Auburn-Gresham Development Corporation to assume management of a 350,000 square foot former high school campus at 81st and May serving the Auburn Gresham community. Perspectives opened three schools: Perspectives Middle Academy, Perspectives Leadership Academy, and Perspectives High School of Technology. With their first graduating classes in 2010, these schools more than doubled the graduation rate of the high school that had previously served the community.
As the transformation in Auburn Gresham was just beginning, Perspectives partnered with the Illinois Institute of Technology to open Perspectives/IIT Math & Science Academy in 2008. In the spring of 2012, this school celebrated its first graduating class, with 95% of graduates going on to college.
Today, Perspectives Charter Schools serves nearly 2,300 students in grades six through twelve at five open-enrollment, tuition-free public schools.