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Linda Mah
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Promise Signing Days: Future Promise

Kindergarten Families Pledge to Support Students

Kalamazoo Public Schools kindergarteners and their parents pledged to work hard to take advantage of the Kalamazoo Promise at the Promise Signing Days this fall.

The now-annual celebrations, Promise Signing Days encourage families to acknowledge the work and commitment that it takes to prepare a student — starting in kindergarten — to graduate from high school.

KPS Superintendent Dr. Michael Rice and Kalamazoo Promise Executive Director Bob Jorth attended the Promise Signing Day at Northeastern Elementary School. The event was held in conjunction with the school open house.

“Every student who graduates from KPS has a shot at a KPS scholarship called the Kalamazoo Promise, an opportunity to extend their opportunities in life, but we need our parents and our grandparents to help us out,” KPS Superintendent Dr. Michael Rice told Northeastern adults. “We need our parents and our grandparents to pour into our children every day to help them learn how to read and write and do math.”

At the signing days, families pledged to support and encourage their students by helping with homework and reading, the school district promised to create a positive learning environment, and the Kalamazoo Promise office promised to pay the students’ college tuition upon high school graduation.

The Kalamazoo Promise is a scholarship for Kalamazoo Public Schools' graduates. The amount of the scholarship varies depending on how long the student has continuously attended KPS and resided in the district. For students who attend KPS from kindergarten through 12th grade, the Promise pays all tuition and mandatory fees at all public universities and colleges and most private schools in Michigan.

Jorth told the audience that the Kalamazoo Promise has given scholarships to 13 classes of graduates. The Promise has awarded more than 5,200 scholarships totaling $108 million to KPS graduates.

“This is a real deal for you and these kindergarteners,” Jorth said. “I am so excited to see another class starting with this future, this hope.”

For more information about the Kalamazoo Promise, visit or call (269) 337-0037.

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