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Tennis Legend Andre Agassi Celebrates Opening Of New Charter School In South San Diego

Andre Agassi speaks at the celebration of the official opening of the Hawking...

Photo by Priya Sridhar

Above: Andre Agassi speaks at the celebration of the official opening of the Hawking STEAM School Site 2 in South San Diego on February 6, 2020.

The Hawking STEAM Charter School Site 2 celebrated its official opening Thursday with the help of former world champion tennis player Andre Agassi.

The school's curriculum focuses on science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics, or STEAM. Between its two campuses, it serves more than 1,100 students from kindergarten through sixth grade.

The schools' campuses were developed by the Turner-Agassi Charter School Facilities Fund, a social impact investment fund that provides resources to high performing charter school operators.

Reported by Priya Sridhar , Video by Nicholas Mcvicker

The fund takes the lead in picking the school site, designing it and constructing it, then leases the school back to school operators who can eventually purchase it. Since 2011, the fund has opened 96 schools across the country, the Hawking STEAM Charter Schools are the first two campuses in San Diego.

Agassi says encouraging students to pursue their education is a personal passion since he dropped out of school in eighth grade to play tennis.

"I think it was my lack of education and my lack of choice, lack of choice led to a real disconnect and that disconnect led to a real reevaluation of my life," Agassi said. "And when I started to give children who really don't have a choice the future of their choosing ... that motivated me and really gave me the second half of my career and my wife and my life. I owe it a lot."

Listen to this story by Priya Sridhar.

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