Martin Luther King, Jr. Charter School of Excellence

Our Mission

“Intelligence plus character – that is the goal of true education.” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Martin Luther King, Jr. Charter School of Excellence prepares kindergarten through fifth grade students of Springfield for academic success and engaged citizenship through insistence on rigorous, challenging work. The school incorporates Dr. King’s commitment to the highest standards in scholarship, civic participation, and the ideal of the beloved community.


MLK provides an academically and behaviorally rigorous environment for children of Springfield. We believe that to truly prepare each child for the rigors of middle school, high school, college or career we must provide them with a warm and demanding work environment. We are committed to fostering a sense of belonging that enables each and every one of our students to perform at their highest level.  At MLK all students are held accountable for class work, homework, mastery of learning objectives, and behavioral expectations on a daily basis.

Aristotle said that “we are what we repeatedly do.  Excellence then is not an act but a habit.” The school is proactive in discipline, building a strong sense of community, getting students excited about achievement, and giving teachers and staff the support they need.  The school plans proactively to avoid misbehavior. Teachers plan engaging lessons. Clear procedures for all activities reduce confusion and rule breaking and maximize efficiency. A positive school culture benefits students and teachers in the classroom. Good classroom management is a means to an end, not an end itself. The goal is to create a culture of achievement in the school.  Together, we place the highest value on student achievement and show students the path to success. We will create a community where students would rather learn than distract or disrupt their learning or the learning of others.

We believe in a community where students know what is expected of them, using structure and predictability to allow students to feel comfortable, safe, protected, and included. In this community space, they can thrive as students and as people. It is our job to provide this. This sense of community will come from showing and earning respect, being firm and positive, and sharing the love that brought us to this work, even when issuing consequences. This constant pursuit of Excellence lives within a culture of mutual respect and drives everything in our school’s beloved community.

MLKCSE’s Core Values

Respect - Take care of yourself, others and your environment. Believe in yourself. Use kind words and actions. Treat others how you want to be treated. Defer to the adults who care for you.

Cooperation - Work well (respectfully and responsibly) with other people. Share with other people. Do something for the good of the group.

Responsibility - Make good choices. Do what you are supposed to do. Meet expectations.

Learning - Discover or understand something new. Be a good listener, share ideas and ask questions. Seek knowledge and build on what you already know. Develop a skill.

Social Justice: Social - people, community; Justice – equal rights and fairness; Social Justice – treating all people in a community fairly.

Service - Help others.

Perseverance - Work hard. Try your best. Do not give up when something is difficult. “If at first you don’t succeed…try, try again!”

Honesty - Tell the truth (even if it does not benefit you).  “Keep it real”.  Be sincere and do not mislead.

Beloved Community - A group of people who care for one another. A group of people who see the good in one another. A group of people who all contribute something to the community. A group of people who respect one another.