We’re proud to celebrate the contributions of our parents in the community with the KIPP DC Parent Spotlight. Inside this month’s spotlight is a respected figure at KIPP DC’s Benning Campus, Mark Sands. Many faces have come and gone since KIPP DC’s Benning Campus first opened it’s doors in 2008, but one constant has been Mr. Sands and his contributions to student success as building manager and a parent.
“I’ve been here since the building opened in 2008. Basically, I take on all of the responsibilities dealing with managing the building. Facilities, security, engineering responsibilities, anything that needs an extra push around the building,” he said.
Mr. Sands is a sixth-generation Washingtonian, and being ingrained in his community for so long has given his words extra meaning. “I see kids around the building and try and give them the push to take education seriously and have them learn and grow as adults,” he describes. “Most of the students have been here since PreK, so I’ve seen them grow up. I also know and grew up with many of their parents, so it definitely helps.”
What’s also fascinating about Mr. Sands and his story is just how far his roots at KIPP DC have spread since first planting them in 2008. He has three daughters that have gone to KIPP DC schools, including one who was part of the founding class of KIPP DC College Preparatory and is now employed with KIPP DC. He also has two grandsons, two nephews, one niece, and one great-niece all who have either attended or currently are attending a KIPP DC school.
Ten years have passed since Mark first joined KIPP DC and he’s motivated to continue doing his part to empower our students. “I always say to our teachers and staff ‘It takes a village,’ because it truly does. It takes everyone doing what they need to do so our kids can grow successfully.”