Former Boston Fed President Cathy Minehan and Robert Mudge of Verizon initiated the Classroom at the Workplace program in the summer of 1999 in response to low standardized test scores at their partner high schools, South Boston and Dorchester.
Designed to improve literacy and math skills, the program also gives high-school students the structure to succeed, an understanding of what they need to do to move ahead in life, and self-confidence through working with adults.
In 1999, the Boston Fed and two other participating companies each hired about a dozen interns. Every workday included 90 minutes as designated time to practice reading. By the end of the summer, the interns’ reading ability tested 1.5 grade levels higher.
In 2001, the Boston Fed piloted a math program to address MCAS (Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System) graduation requirements. Five students in our program were required to take the MCAS that year, and all of them passed. Because of the success we were having, we made Classroom in the Workplace a year-round program in 2002. The results remain impressive, and we’ve been able to increase the number of participating students.
Education & Partnership Specialist