Cool Schools: Duke Ellington School For The Performing Arts

11:19 AM, Dec 3, 2010   |    comments
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WASHINGTON, DC (WUSA) -- Duke Ellington School for the Performing Arts in Northwest searches for students talented in musical instruments, dance, vocalists and acting and helps them blossom.

What's so cool about what they do? Often times the teens who apply are having trouble with traditional subjects, like Math, English, or History. So the school gives them the extra help they need in the classroom to graduate.

English teacher Vanessa Snyder says, "I'm always putting something written in front of you, if it's not a newspaper article, it's an essay, or it's a short story."

The school days runs from 830 a.m. to 5 p.m. The extra work really pays off according to Head of School Rory Pullens who says the school has a "98 percent on time graduation rate. Ninety-five percent of these students are accepted in the institutions of high learning. Something amazing happens when young people are engaged."

Pullens says students are so thrilled they get professional instruction in the arts at Duke Ellington, they will put the extra time in with their traditional subjects. Teens know if they don't keep up their GPA they will be kicked out.

Better grades and amazing performances are the result. Now that's cool!!!

Check out "Dream Girls" on Duke Ellington's stage through December 18th, to get the full understanding of how cool this school really is!

Cool Schools runs every Friday morning around 5:30 a.m.  If would like to tell Mike Hydeck your Cool Schools story, please send an email to

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