Freedom School


St. Luke’s commitment to being an open, inclusive, and anti-racist church is not just something we say- it’s something we do. That’s why we’re working alongside the Indianapolis Freedom School Partnership and launching the first Children’s Defense Fund Freedom School on the Northside of Indianapolis in June 13 through July 22, 2022.

CDF Freedom Schools© are six-week summer programs designed to increase literacy, self-esteem, socio-emotional skills, and a love of learning for children in elementary school. We disrupt the summer learning slide by keeping scholars engaged and stimulated. CDF Freedom Schools© help children discover their potential and greatness. We utilize books and curricula that celebrate the cultures and contributions of people of color. We also employ young-adult teachers and mentors who serve as role models and mentors.

Volunteer today, change a child's life forever.

Why Freedom School at St. Luke's?

This program aligns with the commitment St. Luke's has made to becoming a justice-seeking and anti-racist church. It supports our strategic plan to reach hundreds of thousands of people who may have given up on church (as those served and serving). As we continue to shift our culture toward being a church that is a place where the community belongs: We ALL belong here!

Who are the Scholars and Families?

Scholars and families are identified by Washington Township's school social workers and other partnering agencies. The parents of scholars do pay for aftercare and excursions and attend at least 2 family workshops.

“Education is the precondition for a child to thrive. Yet, only 13 percent of Black fourth graders can read at grade level. That kind of man-made disaster is what CDF Freedom Schools have been created to prevent and eliminate. We believe a child who can read is a more confident and empowered child. Children who can’t read are sentenced to a social and economic death. With the help of a group of nationally recognized reading specialists, backed by an intensive training course for college servant leaders at CDF Haley Farm, the Children’s Defense Fund has devoted years toward developing CDF Freedom Schools around a strong and effective integrated reading curriculum”

-Marian Wright Edelman Founder and President Emerita

Founded by Civil Rights Lawyer, Educator, Advocate Marian Wright Edelman to answer the question how do we continue to dismantle the systems of injustice after the civil rights movement.

CDF Freedom Schools© is a national program of the Children’s Defense Fund, which operates hundreds of Freedom Schools around the United States.

  • Congregants serve as classroom and kitchen volunteers, family workshop facilitators, read aloud guests and field “trip” chaperones or sponsors
  • Host Freedom School Sunday to connect families or church and church to families
  • Opportunities for inter-departmental partnership
  • Deploying volunteers to Freedom School
  • Providing tangible opportunity for people to live out their commitment to antiracism and justice
  • Creating a two lane highway from Freedom School to children’s, youth, CCJ and outreach ministries next steps
  • 5 week, week day summer program from 8:00-5:30 p.m. June 13th-July 22nd
  • 1 hour of morning care and 2 hours of after care (3:30-5:30)
  • 100 scholars and 10 Servant Leader Interns
  • K- 4 students (approximately 10 per grade level)
  • Daily “Harambe” and read Aloud Guest
  • Classroom Time
  • Snack
  • Lunch
  • Afternoon Snack
  • Weekly “excursions” and Family Workshops

You Belong Here

In community, at this church, serving others, in relationship with God, and by making an impact in the world!