CICS Ralph Ellison School & Family Follow Their Own Beat

My name is Phillip Betts and my son, Phillip Betts, is a sophomore at CICS Ralph Ellison in the south side’s Auburn Gresham neighborhood. When my son was finishing grammar school and we began to search for high schools, we visited CICS Ralph Ellison. Phillip had always earned good grades but had struggled with learning comprehension. Once inside CICS Ralph Ellison, I was struck by the professional staff and the safe, orderly and inclusive learning environment they create there. In the two years my son Phillip has attended, our expectations have certainly been met.

In grammar school, Phillip shone as a young drummer but lacked confidence as a student. Playing the drums on pots and pans since he was four years old, he knew timbre and rhythm. However, he didn’t like math. He didn’t like doing his homework. And, he hesitated to ask for help. But upon entering CICS Ralph Ellison as a freshman, his own rhythm changed. Slowly, he began going to school confidently to learn. Over the past two years, CICS Ralph Ellison has been a great help to Phillip’s maturing process. He’s learned to understand his environment, to ask questions without being ashamed and to communicate clearly. The Instructional Effectiveness Specialists and Social Workers are not only booksmart but also caring of all students. They make accommodations and a strong support system that guarantees learning is clear and concise.

Our family would recommend the excellent teachers and staff at CICS Ralph Ellison to anyone and we are thankful for them. They’ve given Phillip the opportunity to learn and created a community-minded spirit. We’re confident that things will continue positively for Phillip, and all students, to learn to the beat of their own drum.