Our rigorous academic curriculum begins the summer before ninth grade during our Bridge to High School program. We remediate academic deficits before students begin their high school coursework, and then continue to meet students at their respective academic levels throughout the next four years. We emphasize literacy and mathematics, and we focus heavily on cultivating strong study skills. Metacognition, time management, organization, test anxiety, study environment, note taking, test preparation, active reading, and lifestyle improvement are addressed on a regular basis.
Mandatory after-school Advisor-led study sessions are held on campus Monday through Friday. Students convene in a quiet and comfortable space, where they are provided with a thoughtfully chosen, nutritious snack of whole foods to refuel their minds and bodies. Study sessions are a time to do homework, check in with and get help from Advisors, meet with our Math and Science Specialist individually or in a group, and participate in community learning projects. Consistent mentorship by our Advisors is a key element in the DTS program. Mutual trust and caring bolsters students’ confidence, and students are apt to perform better when they feel known and understood. While Advisors are students’ and parents’ first line of DTS communication, support is also provided by the Co-Executive Director, Health and Wellness Director, and College Access and Success Counselor, all of whom prioritize getting to know every DTS student.
During the school year, weekend STEM courses are available. Saturday study sessions at the DTS offices are optional and offer a space for quiet study. Students journal year round and may choose any DTS staff member as their journal entry reader.