In a bid to boost attendance and increase student achievement, Bethel Community Schools is partnering with the NFL to introduce a new program to improve attendance and graduation rates.
The NFL is looking for new ways to boost enrollment and graduation for its players at its preseason camp in Philadelphia, where Bethel, a community college and former high school football powerhouse, hosts the annual football showcase on Sept. 6.
“We want to be the place that gives the best chance to the players to do that,” Bethel Senior High School Principal John Estrada said.
“It’s important for us to have high attendance and we want to help them do that.”
The NFL announced the partnership on Wednesday with the Bethel-Skyview Community College District, which will help the schools with a pilot program to help with student engagement and graduation.
The NFL said the pilot will run for four weeks, with the goal of boosting attendance and student achievement in 2019.
The program will involve the schools participating in an NFL-funded summer camps program, and Bethel will host the camp with the Philadelphia Eagles, while Skyview will host with the New York Giants.
The partnership will begin with the Eagles camp, with Bethel hosting the Eagles’ camp in August 2019.
Bethel, which is the highest-performing community college in the Philadelphia region, has a student body of more than 10,000 students.
The district also has more than 7,000 full-time students enrolled.
In addition to the NFL’s program, Bethe High School will be participating in a league-funded football camp on the same day as the Eagles and Giants camps.
“When the NFL does a summer camp with a team, it creates a lot of buzz,” Bethe principal John Ebrard said.
“A lot of our students will be in the building and watching the game.
That’s what we want the players doing.”
Bethel’s camp will run from August 15 to August 24, 2019.
Ebrartds hopes that with the partnership, more students will choose Bethel over other high schools in the area.
“It’s about the students getting to know the coaches and the staff, and the football environment, which we all love,” he said.
Ebrard says that with more high school students enrolled in Bethel’s program than other schools, the district will be able to focus on a program that will help students and the community.
“There’s nothing more important to us than getting kids excited about college and getting them into college,” Ebrord said.