Choice Neighborhood Grant | Impacting the BPS Community in Dorchester

  • Now in its fourth year, the Choice Neighborhood grant supports students and families in the Quincy corridor of Dorchester. The five-year federal grant targets students attending the Burke High School, Haynes Early Education Center, Winthrop Elementary, the King K-8 and Lilla Frederick Pilot Middle School. Schools receive $18,000 yearly to support academic before and after school programs, tutoring, technology, counseling, recreation, school-based health centers and home-school initiatives. Grant expectations include improved school academic performance, learning opportunities for young children and improved school attendance and graduation rates. School leaders have come up with innovative use of resources. Reported impact is highlighted below:  

Student Impact

    • Student attendance is up 90% and students are showing improved grades, and increased graduation rates.
    • Increase in programs focused on male, preschool and elementary students and families include innovative areas: technology, robotics and science, technology, engineering, and arts and math.
    • Increased student leadership at the Burke High School; ten students to attend the National Society of Black Engineers 42nd Annual Convention, while other students tutor at the Haynes EEC.
    • King students in grades 4 and 5 serve as junior basketball coaches.
    • School yard renovations at both the Haynes and King Schools.

Family & Community Impact

  • Students at Burke HS attend mentoring program

    • New housing and public safety improvements in the neighborhood.
    • Schools formed partnerships with community-based organizations to support adult dance, healthy eating and wellness programs.
    • Parents have been engaged in literacy nights, school governance, and after-school swimming and fitness classes.
    • Community volunteers regularly mentor students to improve reading, writing and academic success.

    Community Engagement works with school principals and headmasters to review program goals and monitor mandated quarterly reporting to US Department of Housing and Urban Development. Managed by the City of Boston departments of Neighborhood Development and Jobs & Community Services, The Choice Neighborhood Grant services an estimated 315 BPS students attending the Choice Neighborhood schools.