174 Latino and English learner students return to school ready to learn

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We were very busy this summer! Although Sociedad Latina has run summer programming for Latino youth in Boston for decades, this year we were proud to become an official site of the 5th Quarter of Learning. Through this partnership with Boston Public Schools and Boston After School & Beyond, we provided 174 youth with six weeks of intensive programming to build skills for academic success, develop social-emotional competencies, explore diverse cultural heritages, and become more connected to the community. 97% of youth were English learners, representing diverse linguistic backgrounds from across Latin America, the Caribbean and beyond.

  • Middle schoolers took part in our STEAM Team (science, technology, engineering, arts and math), where they learned about computer programming, projectiles, climate change, comic book creation, storytelling, food justice, robotics, and more. 
  • Rising 9th graders in Summer Bridge Academy prepared for high school success and carried out service-learning projects in the community with The Greater Boston Food Bank, Room To Grow and Cradles To Crayons. 
  • Rising 10th graders developed business ideas in response to food scarcity issues in the emprende! youth entrepreneurship program, run in partnership with Babson College and Verizon Foundation. 
  • Rising 11th graders in Escalera: Steps to Success polished their college readiness skills and completed internship placements coordinated by the Boston Private Industry Council. 
  • And high schoolers in Academy for Latinos Achieving Success engaged hundreds of community members in art, organizing and health education activities throughout the summer.

Radelquis Benoit, a Youth Leader this summer, told us about his experience: "This summer was a new and different experience for me. I liked being at Sociedad Latina because I made new friends and we got to share our ideas on how to fix problems in the community, like making schools better for people of color and disabled students."

Without robust, accessible summer learning opportunities, youth from low-income families are more likely than their higher-income peers to experience “summer slide” and lose some of the achievement gains they made during the previous school year. With Sociedad Latina, youth have access to these learning opportunities in a culturally and linguistically responsive setting that promotes language acquisition and positive cultural identities. We look forward to seeing our summer youth excel this school year!

Read the press coverage of our summer programs in The Boston Globe, Bay State Banner, and Babson College.

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