Our Mission: Opportunity

Because school isn’t enough

Children spend just 20% of their waking hours in school. What happens during the remaining hours explains more than half of the achievement gap between students from low-income families and their peers.

At Boston Beyond, we’re leading a citywide effort to recapture these precious out-of-school hours. Our partners fill untapped hours with enriching, skill-building programs that prepare young people for a lifetime of opportunity.

It’s time to think bigger about learning

We know that schools alone can’t solve large, income-driven gaps in opportunity. We also know from research that quality after-school and summer programs can go a long way in building the essential skills children need for success in school, the workplace, and beyond.

Boston Beyond breaks down traditional boundaries around learning—asking how we can use innovative models beyond classrooms and beyond school hours to support student success.

Did you know?

While middle class children are reading, learning, creating, and problem solving at home and in structured out-of-school programs, children in poverty are far less likely to have access to such enrichment.

  • Higher-earning parents spend nearly 7x as much on enrichment as parents challenged by poverty.
  • Middle class children are 8x more likely to enjoy summer camp or another summer learning opportunity.
  • Middle class children spend an average of 6,000 more hours learning outside the classroom by 6th grade than children born into poverty.

The effects of the enrichment gap are cumulative and unjust. Over time, children from low-income families face increasing disparities in skills and opportunity. At Boston Beyond, we aim to close the enrichment gap and ensure every child in Boston has access to the future they deserve.

How do we get there?

Learn about the five strategies we use to create opportunity beyond school.

Boston Learns Together

Learn more about our cross-sector model of building skills and creating opportunity for Boston kids.

Learning shouldn’t stop when the school day does. I am proud that Boston continues to lead the way in providing more opportunities for young people to learn and grow.

Mayor Martin J. Walsh, City of Boston