Breakthrough for your child
Breakthrough students are highly motivated young people who want to work hard during the summer and after school. They commit to eight years of year-round academic enrichment, with the goal of attending a competitive four-year college.
Breakthrough offers a fantastic environment for learning. Through the end of middle school, students attend our summer academic program. Classes are small, with 6 to 8 students, and feature engaging instruction and hands-on projects. Our teachers bring energy, creativity, and a deep commitment to helping each student achieve. During the school-year, students attend our after-school program two afternoons per week, receiving tutoring and attending enrichment classes. Once in high school, students receive ongoing support from Breakthrough's partner organizations. All programming is tuition-free.
Breakthrough also helps students gain admission to top-performingschools. Our staff work with students and families to identify district, charter, private, and parochial schools that are a good match, and assist with admissions and financial aid. We helped 94% of current Breakthrough sixth graders in gaining admission to top-tier middle schools; in 2013, we will be building in similar support with high school admissions.
The application process
Applications from prospective students are accepted each year from late November to early February. Applicants must be fourth graders at a public or parochial school in San Francisco and should be at or above grade-level in most subjects. We particularly look for students who receive free or reduced-price lunch and will be the first in their families to attend a four-year college. Students and parents each complete a portion of the application; we also carefully consider report cards, test scores, and teacher feedback. In addition, we weigh students' motivation to attend Breakthrough and the other educational and enrichment options available to them. Applicants may be invited to interview on a Saturday in March, with decisions made by early April. The process is competitive, with one-quarter or fewer of applicants accepted.
If your child is not admitted, we hope you will find a different opportunity for him or her. See below for a list of other programs in the Bay Area. Please be aware that application deadlines and admissions criteria vary. Some programs charge tuition, but financial aid may be available. You can also visit ParentsConnect for ideas.
- Bridge the Gap College Prep
- Camp Galileo
- Camp Mendocino
- Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy
- Jamestown Community Center
- Magic Zone with Mo'Magic
- Mission Graduates
- Opportunity Impact
- San Francisco Friends School Summer Camp
- Seven Tepees Youth Program
- Wanderers Camp
- YMCA of San Francisco
- 826 Valencia