They say everyone’s a little Irish on St. Patrick’s Day and the kindergarten class at St. Thomas Aquinas (STA) Catholic School, IMS is no exception! On the Friday before St. Patrick’s Day, Officer Lippi of the 17th District, who is a regular volunteer in the STA kindergarten class, was joined by Deputy Commissioner Joe Sullivan and other officers to teach these lucky little leprechauns the fun tradition of making Irish Potatoes – a perfect treat for small hands to make. Watch the Fox29 news clip here!
Officer Lippi is no stranger to these young students, as he comes into their classroom three times per week to spend time with them, and it’s obvious by their reaction when he walks into the room how much they love and appreciate him. It’s all part of an initiative called the Police Youth Alliance (PYA) which is a partnership between the Philadelphia Police Department and Independence Mission Schools.
PYA is an after-school program that features activities such as chess, step dance, drumline, art, carpentry and reading. The programs are taught by uniformed police officers in each school’s corresponding police district in an effort build better relationships with the neighborhoods they serve. This school year, 12 of our 15 Independence Mission Schools are being enriched with 29 different after-school programs.