The Bridge Way
Bridge Academy is a tuition-free public charter school with one focus — to prepare every child for a college degree.
To make sure our students are prepared for success in high school and on a clear path to college, our program reflects the practices implemented at high performing urban schools across the country. Like these schools, we know that with great teaching, everything is possible, and within a culture of achievement, student learning can thrive. Rigorous academics and character education are at the heart of all we do. We bring our mission and vision to life by prioritizing the following principles and practices:
Urgent Focus on Academics
Game Changing Teachers
Outstanding classroom teachers the key to student achievement. We recruit, train, support, and retain the most sought after, “game changing” teachers who will transform our students’ lives. Our teachers have 5 hours of professional development weekly, 1 day each month, and 4 weeks over the summer. Teachers receive individualized coaching on a daily and weekly basis. We offer a co-teaching model in grades K-2 to provide smaller teacher to student ratios and provide mentorship opportunities for new teachers.
More Learning Time
Every minute matters at Bridge Academy. We provide and extended day and an extended year (1.5 hours and 10 days longer than traditional public schools) to provide more learning time in reading and math. Students have small group reading instruction for nearly 3 hours daily and an extended math block that includes calculation skills, problem solving, and math concept building. Instructional time is sacred at our school. We meticulously plan and pace our lessons to maximize every minute. Homework and independent reading are required every night and over breaks.
Rigorous, Literacy-rich Curriculum
Bridge Academy outlines the ambitious academic standards for each grade level so that success in one grade can be seamlessly build on the next. Our curriculum is aligned to the new, internationally benchmarked Common Core State Standards and to true college readiness. We infuse reading and writing into all subjects and build a love for and demonstrated fluency and capacity in reading, with all students reading on or above grade level by grade three.
Individualized Student Support
Data drives our decisions at Bridge Academy. We know where each and every student’s academic skills are based upon daily, weekly, and interim data collection and analysis. We use our data to provide daily individualized support for any students struggling with a subject or skills to ensure that no one is left behind, and all standards are mastered by all students as they prepare for high school and college success during our Bridge to Success class each afternoon. Every K-2 classroom at Bridge Academy, has two teachers, which means a 1:15 teacher to student ratio.
A Culture of Achievement
A Structured, Urgent, and Joyful Environment
High behavior expectations mean teachers are 100% focused on teaching and scholars are 100% focused on learning. We provide a highly structured school environment, balancing the urgency and rigor of educational excellence with the joy that comes from academic achievement. From morning routines to the end of the day routines, students will receive a consistent message that nothing is more important than learning. Our scholars rise to the level of high expectations held for them because work at Bridge Academy is rigorous and engaging, structure and routines allow for success, and a joy for learning permeates the school. Students are frequently and systematically recognized for academic achievement and good behavior.
Positive Character Development
Students who succeed develop more than just academic mastery—they possess exceptional strength of character. At Bridge Academy, we teach character education as explicitly as we teach academics. All students and staff live by the BRIDGE values (Bravery, Responsibility, Integrity, Diversity, Grit, and Enthusiasm). We offer a daily Character and Fitness PE class during which we explicitly teach social-emotional skills, our BRIDGE values, and self-awareness.
Small and Safe K-8
Bridge Academy is a small learning community in which all teachers and leaders know the names of all students. Each grade level will have two classrooms. Bridge Academy will grow one grade at a time, reaching 540 scholars at full capacity in 2022. As a K-8 school, we offer a rare commitment to a child’s long-term growth and development, understanding that acquiring knowledge in the early grades sets the stage for analysis and critical thinking, required to succeed in high school, college, and life.
College Preparatory Mission
Bridge Academy focuses on college the second a child walks through our doors. With elements of college culture incorporated into each classroom and two college campus visits per year, each Bridge Academy scholar is on the path to a four year college degree.
Family and Community Partnerships
Our families are our partners. Starting with summer home visits and family orientations, we prize family involvement. During the year, families can expect daily updates on scholar progress, weekly phone communication, open doors to the school and regular access to administration. We cultivate partnerships with community organizations to provide even more supports for our students and families, including enrichment opportunities and health services.