Boston Summer Learning Project Highlighted as Model for Social-Emotional Learning

The Boston Summer Learning Project, an effort led by Boston After School & Beyond and Boston Public Schools to prepare students for college and career success, is featured in a report released by the Rennie Center for Education Research & Policy.

This report, the Condition of Education in the Commonwealth, gives state leaders a clear view of student progress in Massachusetts while pointing to areas for continued improvement. The report singles out social-emotional learning as a critical next step in education reform.

The Boston Summer Learning Project is a city-wide effort dedicated to advancing a year-round learning system that connects school, out of school time, and summer learning. In 2015, the SLP partnered with 50 schools and 16 community organizations to connect 1,000 high-need students to engaging summer learning opportunities. The programs combine academic and hands-on learning experiences while emphasizing social-emotional skills associated with college and career success, including perseverance, critical thinking, relationships, and self-regulation.

A critical piece of the effort is measurement and evaluation. Program leaders assess participation, program quality, and students’ social-emotional growth.

“The Boston Summer Learning Project not only looks at whether programs are working, but also how programs are working,” said Chad d’Entremont, Executive Director of the Rennie Center for Education Research & Policy. “Boston is one of the few districts that has taken steps to assess social-emotional learning, which is critical to identifying best practices and expanding promising models.”

An increasing body of evidence shows that the development of social-emotional skills is tied to better academic performancehigher college retention ratesincreased employment rates and wages, and better overall health and well-being.

To read the full report, please click here.