The mission of Horizons at Saint David’s is to prevent academic slide by providing a rich academic and cultural experience for boys from low-income, diverse families during their elementary school years. Horizons boys experience a continuum of support that cultivates a sense of connection to a broader community which helps them achieve their full potential.
The founding of Horizons at Saint David's
Research on summer learning has found that all students lose skills over the summer. However, students from low-income families fall behind their wealthier peers over the course of the summer, either because they are losing knowledge and skills or gaining them at a slower pace. In 2011, after extensive research into summer learning programs, Saint David’s affiliated with Horizons National, a network of 55 summer enrichment programs located on the campuses of independent schools, colleges and universities.
Horizons at Saint David’s was the first Horizons affiliate in Manhattan, and the first all-boys program. We recruit students from partner schools in Harlem. Once boys are admitted to the program, they are invited to return each summer until they are ready for high school.
The program began in the summer of 2012 with one grade of 17 boys. Each year we have added a new class of rising first graders. We anticipate an enrollment of 115 boys in grades 1-8 in summer 2019.
History of Horizons National
The first Horizons program was launched in 1964 in New Canaan, CT to serve children from low-income families in lower Fairfield County. In 1981, Yale University conducted a formal evaluation of the program, which highlighted the benefits for the children served and clearly demonstrated that the model reduces summer learning loss. Building on this evaluation, Horizons National was formed in 1995 to replicate this model in other communities. Each Horizons affiliate is reflective of its local community and identifies its own objectives while adhering to a set of principals common to all.
Horizons National now serves 5,000 students at 55 sites in 17 states. Overall, the network boasts a 98% high school graduation rate, with 94% of graduates going on to college. Click here to learn more.