By Darla Shelden
City Sentinel Reporter
Harding Charter Preparatory High School will host its annual fundraiser “Dollars for Scholars” on Thursday, October 22, from 7 to 9 p.m. The event will be held at The Hart Building, 726 W. Sheridan Avenue in downtown Oklahoma City.
Established in 2003, Harding Charter Prep is a free, public school that has graduated nine classes and was named a National Blue Ribbon School in 2013. Newsweek ranked Harding Charter Prep #118 in its 2015 list of top 2,300 Best High Schools in America. US News and World Report has ranked HCP #1 in Oklahoma and #89 in America.
In 2015, 98 percent of the graduating class went on to attend four-year or two-year colleges, many of them the first in their families to do so, while the remaining 2 percent entered the military.
All proceeds from “Dollars for Scholars” will be distributed in scholarships for students graduating from HCP.
Chair of this year’s event is Oklahoma City resident and the founder of Sally’s List, Sara Jane Rose.
“During the 1950’s and 60’s, Harding was the premiere Oklahoma City high school and many of the graduates from that era went on to become celebrated citizens of our city and state,” Rose stated. “The school closed in the 60’s and remained shuttered until 2002, when HCP took over the space.”
“Dollars for Scholars” is celebrating its 10th year with HCP parents, teachers and alumni. The evening includes fabulous hors-d’oeuvres, short speeches, a live string duet, a silent auction and an opportunity to socialize with friends. The proceeds go into a larger scholarship pool. which is distributed in differing amounts from year to year,” Rose added.
This year’s event honors Lela Bennet Sullivan, Class of 1959, and Mark Sullivan, Class of 1958.
“My older daughter, Jorja, now a sophomore at Bennington College in Vermont, graduated from Harding in 2014. And my younger daughter, Rachel, is a sophomore at Harding Prep.” Rose said. “Both girls attended private schools (Westminster & Heritage Hall) before moving over to Harding, and I cannot tell you how incredibly pleased we are with all that the school has provided them.
“The majority of the students at HCP come from low income homes and many of them are the first in their families to graduate from high school,” Rose continued. “Even more impressive, for the last two years, every student who graduated has been accepted into a college program.”
Harding Charter Prep, located at 3333 N. Shartel Avenue, is a public charter school is part of the Oklahoma City Public Schools system, offering a free public college-preparatory education.
Its mission is to provide each student with an academically challenging, educational experience through an Advanced Placement curriculum, which will prepare graduates for success at a four-year university.
Individual event tickets can be purchased for $25 and sponsorships are available.