What is Breakthrough Minneapolis?

Breakthrough Minneapolis at Blake is an educational enrichment program that prepares a diverse group of motivated and high-potential students from Minneapolis Public Schools starting in the summer before 7th grade. Through rigorous, student-centered and culturally responsive academic programming and exposure to a college-going culture, students are prepared to successfully navigate through middle and high school with the goal of entering into and completing a post-secondary program aligned to their career goals.

Breakthrough Minneapolis at Blake (formerly LearningWorks) began over 20 years ago in partnership with Minneapolis Public Schools to address the complex factors that contribute to the opportunity gaps faced by students who are historically underrepresented in post-secondary programs (e.g. college, trade school).

Breakthrough Minneapolis facilitates this by providing up to six years of tuition-free support, academic enrichment and social emotional development programming for students starting in 7th grade. For each incoming class of students, this includes:

  • Three (3) summers of learning and academic enrichment,
  • Tutoring, mentoring, and social-emotional skills development during a School Year Program that includes monthly Saturday sessions, and
  • Academic support and guidance throughout high school.

Consistent with the program’s mission to draw a diverse group of young people into the field of teaching, Breakthrough Minneapolis’ challenging academic classes are all taught by talented high school and college students. With the guidance of instructional coaches (licensed MN teachers), these young educators design and implement exciting classes leading instruction for 8-12 students in math, science, literature, social studies, and explorations (i.e. elective) courses during the intensive six-week summer.

Our Results

75% of our aspiring teachers go on to pursue careers in teaching, citing Breakthrough Minneapolis at Blake as their primary influence.

99% of our students graduate from high school on time; and, 83% of those graduates are currently enrolled in, or have graduated from college.

A tuition-free program since it was founded, Breakthrough Minneapolis at Blake has successfully established itself as the preeminent program for high-achieving middle school students seeking free summer and weekend options here in Minneapolis.

We hope you enjoy learning more about us, and we're grateful for the opportunity to share.

Our Teachers

Our teachers are high school seniors and college-age students themselves, which means the program relies on the power of positive peer-pressure to accomplish our dual mission of setting young people on the path to college, while engaging older students in the art of teaching. All our teachers receive over 250 hours of hands-on student interaction, over 80 hours of training in best practice approaches, and support of experienced Instructional Coaches. Apply here

Our Students

We offer a three-year, 500-hour academic enrichment program to a representative group highly-motivated Minneapolis Public School students in a setting built around our core belief that "it's cool to be you, it's cool to be smart, and it's cool to care." Apply here