Marva Collins took her pension and started a private school in Chicago

Marva Collins was a former substitute teacher who spent a majority of her life educating poor black students in the Chicago area.  In 1975, Collins cashed in her $5,000 in pension savings and opened the Westside Preparatory School—a private school.

She started with only four students and charged $80 a month in tuition.  Her school eventually grew to over 200 children offering classes from prekindergarten through the eighth grade.   It stayed in operation for over 30 years.

This brief clip gives more information on this extraordinary woman who was adamant on not allowing her students to fail.  She once said, “Kids don’t fail.  Teachers fail, school systems fail. The people who teach children that they are failures—they are the problem.”

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