From classroom trends to school board decisions, Class Act will keep you updated on all the school issues followed by the Star Tribune’s education reporters. Contributors include Steve Brandt, who covers Minneapolis; Kim McGuire, who covers the west metro; Erin Adler, who covers the south metro; Anthony Lonetree and Libor Jany, who cover St. Paul and the east metro, and Paul Levy and Shannon Prather, who cover the north metro.

MPA students taking senior portraits for free

Posted by: Anthony Lonetree Updated: October 20, 2013 - 10:06 PM

Two seniors at Mounds Park Academy (MPA) in Maplewood are teaming to offer free portraits to metro area high school seniors who cannot afford or do not have access to professional photographers.

Kendra Stone and Phillipe Thao are taking the photos as part of a senior service project.

The duo dubbed the endeavor, "KP Photography," after inheriting it from founder Callan Shackor, a 2013 MPA graduate. She shot her portraits for a senior service project -- and as a Girl Scout project, too.

"For Girl Scouts, it had to be sustainable, so over the summer Kendra and I took it over," Thao wrote on the MPA website.

Last year, Shackor's project was linked to Breakthrough Saint Paul, a partnership between MPA and the St. Paul public schools. But Thao and Stone have expanded its scope to the entire Twin Cities area, and are encouraging seniors wishing to schedule appointments to e-mail them at kpphotographymn@gmail.com or to message them at their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Photography.by.KP

Sample portraits can be seen on the Facebook page, and are drawn from photo shoots held in St. Paul and in Stillwater, among other locations.

After the shoots, Stone and Thao send free CDs containing the portraits to their photo subjects.

"We love doing this project because every senior deserves to have their photos taken," Thao wrote.

MPA is a pre-K-to-12th-grade independent school. Each of its upper school students must complete at least 60 hours of service over four years, "culminating with an intensive senior service project," in order to graduate, the school said in a news release.

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