Horace Mann, the architect of the American theory of public schooling,
said it best: “Education is the great equalizer.” It is
this belief that serves as the underpinning for everything we do at
The Steppingstone Foundation. We believe, and the Scholars have proven
time and again, that most children, regardless of circumstance, can
earn life-transforming opportunities if they apply themselves in a focused,
demanding, result-oriented academic environment.
Founded in 1990, The Steppingstone Foundation develops and implements programs that prepare underserved students for educational opportunities that lead to college success.
The Steppingstone Academy, Steppingstone’s flagship program, prepares underserved Boston students – called Scholars – to get into and succeed at selective independent and public exam schools in the sixth and seventh grades. The program begins with a 14-month academic component that spans two summers and the intervening school year and bridges the gap between where Scholars are academically and where they need to be to succeed in a rigorous college-preparatory school. Following completion of the academic component, The Steppingstone Academy provides support services to ensure that Scholars thrive in middle and high school, ultimately graduating from four-year colleges. The Steppingstone Academy has been replicated in Hartford and Philadelphia.
In 2007, Steppingstone founded the National Partnership for Educational Access (NPEA), which serves over 200 organizations dedicated to college access for underserved students. In 2011, Steppingstone launched the College Success Academy (CSA), which provides academic preparation and support services to students attending CSA partner public K8 schools, in order to increase the number of Boston students earning college degrees.