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Elev8 seeks to transform the educational achievement and life outcomes of disadvantaged middle school students in five Chicago schools - Ames, Marquette, Orozco, Perspectives and Reavis. Elev8 Chicago envisions these young people graduating from 8th grade ready to make the important choices of adolescence. They will possess a fire for learning, healthy bodies and minds and the support required to succeed in high school and beyond. Elev8 Chicago graduates will enjoy both the skills and the prospects needed for solid careers and fulfilling lives.

Elev8 seeks to:

  • extend the school day with afternoon, weekend and summer programs
  • create an on-site, adolescent-focused health clinic in each school
  • provide social supports, including public benefits screening for families, mentoring and help with high school placement
  • mobilize parent and community leaders to accelerate change and promote advocacy
  • advocate for policies that support similar comprehensive programs in other schools, locally and nationally

In October 2012, the U.S. Department of Education and the Corporation for National and Community Service cited Elev8 Chicago, along with Elev8 Baltimore, as Together for Tomorrow School (TFT) Improvement Champions. The first-time award was given to schools, educational programs and organizations that met TFT criteria for community school models that propel improvement in low-performing schools. Elev8 was one of 24 such initiatives nationally to be honored with the award.

 Download a full description of Elev8 that details partners and strategy, the planning process, components of the program, parental and community involvement, advocacy, and financing for implementation.

For more information, contact Syda Segovia Taylor, or 312-422-9560.

Elev8 Chicago is part of a national Elev8 model that includes similar programs in Baltimore, Oakland and New Mexico. 


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Local Initiatives Support Corporation Chicago connects neighborhoods to the resources they need to become stronger and healthier.

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