I'm excited. For the fourth year, we're gearing up for the Rock to Rock Earth Day Ride. This spring, I and about 1,000 other cyclists in an amazing celebration of Earth Day, community, and our local environment. It's one of my favorite days of the year. I'd love it if you could support my ride.
I am riding for Common Ground -- the high school, urban farm, and environmental education center that's been my second home for the last eight years. This year, Common Ground's students made a fourth straight year of pretty enormous test score gains, and 93% of our grads went on to college -- proving that city kids can beat the state average and be the next generation of environmental leaders. About 8,000 of our New Haven neighbors joined in our community environmental programs. And we grew about 7,000 pounds of fresh, local food on our urban farm -- going to free school lunches and our neighbors who need it most.
This year, I'm riding to close the gap:
- As a charter school, Common Ground receives $9,400 for every student we educate, plus about $1,200 from the federal government as a high-poverty school. The real cost of educating one of our students is currently over $14,000. Other New Haven public schools spend about $20,000 per year.
- It costs Common Ground about $150 to offer a New Haven elementary kid 9 weeks of after-school programs. We charge families $45 for this opportunity, so that it's within reach for every kid.
- It costs us about $25 to grow a row of tomatoes on our urban farm. This summer, we start offering these tomatoes to our neighbors in local public housing projects through a new mobile farm market. We want to keep the price low, so that all our neighbors can eat fresh, healthy food.
Wouldn't it be amazing if we could help make up the difference? If you can help me do this, please make a pledge today.