New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is donating $5 million to the Open Society Institute-Baltimore for its Accelerated Pathways Initiative, a Baltimore high school program to increase graduation rates and after high school success, especially for African-American males.
“Mayor Bloomberg shares our deep commitment to ensure that all children have access to a challenging academic program and to the support they need to graduate and be prepared for successful futures,” said Diana Morris, director of OSI-Baltimore and acting executive director of the Open Society Foundations’ U.S. Programs.
“We are enormously grateful to Mayor Bloomberg for this gift enabling us to partner with Dr. Alonso and City Schools to bring new education models to Baltimore,” she said.
The initiative will combine tailored academic programming with adult mentors, opportunities for paid work, and connections to employment and education to accelerate students’ progress to high school graduation.
“Baltimore’s high school graduation rate has improved in recent years, but is still far too low. Many of our youth face economic hardship and would benefit from programs that allow them to move more quickly through high school and connect them directly to college and work opportunities,” said Jane Sundius, Director of the Education and Youth Development Program for OSI-Baltimore. “The Accelerated Pathway Initiative is an innovative approach that we believe will help many more kids stick with school and see that a promising future is within their reach. Mayor Bloomberg’s gift will make these opportunities a reality.”
OSI-Baltimore staff are also working hand-in-hand with Bloomberg Philanthropies on a parallel high school improvement effort in New York City. The Expanded Success Initiative aims to improve the college and career readiness of young men of color and is a part of the Mayor’s Young Men’s Initiative.
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