Students who complete Breakthrough Greater Boston's (BTGB) Middle School Program enroll in the High School Program, committing to stay on the path to college and benefiting from BTGB's support each step of the way. Students remain closely tied to the BTGB community and a college-going peer group they built in middle school. The high school program is made up of three program components: Advocacy, Summer Programming, and the College Access Program.
BTGB staff members are in continual communication with high school students and their families to ensure that students are doing well both inside and outside the classroom. Through regular check-ins, students are connected to academic supports in the form of one-on-one tutoring, advice about choosing a challenging yet manageable course schedule, assistance with finding enriching, affordable summer and extracurricular opportunities, and ways to stay involved with Breakthrough by volunteering as a teacher, tutor, or high school council representative.
Breakthrough also advocates for students within their high schools by tracking students’ academic progress and meeting with guidance counselors, teachers, and administrators to determine how to best support each individual student.
Academic SupportBreakthrough's Study Hall Program incorporates best practices and research-based evidence in supporting students as they transition to high school. Study Hall provides 9th and 10th grade students with a structured after-school academic environment where they can build good study habits, receive homework assistance, and continue to connect with their college-going cohort.
One-on-one academic mentoring continues to be available for students throughout high school. Students who require additional support are matched with other high school students or college students who serve as tutors in core subjects such as math, literature, science, and social studies.
Throughout the course of the year, Breakthrough staff members work with each current high Breakthrough student to identify and apply for enrichment and internship opportunities for the summer. In addition, BTGB offers its own summer opportunities in the form of the Leadership Academy for rising 9th grade students and the Palante (Spanish for “onward”) Internship Program for rising 10th-12th grade students.
Leadership Academy is a unique summer program that invites a select group of rising 9th grade Breakthrough students to return for the summer to strengthen the academic and leadership skills they will need to make a smooth transition to high school in the fall.
Palante Internship Program is a professional internship program for rising 10th-12th grade students. The goal of the Palante Program is to provide students with meaningful internships that will expose them to interesting careers that require a bachelor’s degree and that will motivate them to continue on the academic path needed to enroll and succeed at a four-year college or university.
College Access Program
The College Access Program is the capstone on a Breakthrough student’s journey to college, providing hands-on assistance to guide students through the process of applying and matriculating a four-year college or university. Starting in 11th grade, the High School Program Director and College Access Coordinator work with each student’s family and guidance counselor to manage the college application and financial aid processes.
Each student is provided a College Access Coach who works one-on-one to assist in researching schools and creating a college list, arranging college visits, completing college application forms, and writing and revising admissions essays. With the help of partner organizations, Breakthrough students have access to free/affordable test prep options and expert advice in completing financial aid forms and analyzing financial aid awards.