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Beacon Academy

Beacon Academy serves low-income students living in Boston and surrounding urban areas. Most (80%) of our students’ families live below the poverty level and the remainder of them live just above it. They don’t always have money for food, often experience instability in their housing, and are plagued by job insecurity. Of our 247 graduates and 22 current students, 57% are Black, 28% Hispanic, 9% Biracial, 3% Caucasian, and 3% Asian. 140 are female-identifying and 129 are male-identifying. Most students become the first in their families to finish high school or complete college, and many break multi-generational cycles of teenage parenthood and adult poverty. In short, Beacon students represent the most underserved Boston residents; yet they have the grit, talent, and determination to change the trajectory of their lives.

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Beacon Stays Busy During Spring “Break”

Most kids spend their spring break relaxing and watching television, but not Beacon students!  Here are some highlights of what kept them busy for the past two weeks.

Classes at MIT

Abandoning the idea of a break, Beacon students spent the first weekend of their spring break taking classes at MIT. Along with thousands of other 8th graders from across the northeast, they participated in the annual Spark Program. Already reasonably priced for participants, MIT’s Educational Studies Program generously funded the experience for each of our students. All students got to choose their classes ahead of time and topics included statistics, art, linguistics, psychology, and much more. Some of the favorite classes were “Writing a One-Minute Film,” “The Science of Language,” “Let’s Talk About the NBA,” “The Science of Chocolate,” and “Printmaking.”  The students also participated in drop-in sessions during free periods. By far the most popular session was the Mutant Plushie Lab in which students took apart stuffed animals and sewed them back together into new creative creatures. 

Institute of Contemporary Art

On the recommendation of our friends Kathy Weinman, Fran Putnoi, and Carol Michael, the students visited the ICA and specifically the exhibit “When the Stars Begin to Fall: Imagination in the American South.” Student Brittney Smith reflected, “[The exhibit] not only made me think about the world that I live in, but it also made me think about the world the artists live in.”

Skiing with the Nobles Ski Team

"BeaconAcadSkiWachstCogswell15-"Thanks to the amazing work of our Board Chair, Pam Dickinson, Beacon students started out their Spring Break with a day of skiing, with help from the ski team from Noble and Greenough School.  They learned the fundamentals, and almost all were going up the chairlift by the end of the day! Find more pictures from this wonderful day here.

 

CoCo Key and Luau Dinner

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On their last weekend of break, our students and a group of Alumni, as well as faculty and staff, joined together for a swim party and luau dinner organized by Beacon Board member Lyndsay Charron. Everyone had a blast going on the slides and swimming!