Strive Together Network badgeThe Boston Opportunity Agenda and its partners conduct independent research to inform our work along the cradle-to-career educational pipeline. Through our annual report cards, forums, evaluations and community dialogues, we aim to educate ourselves and the greater Boston community on our challenges, progress and collective impact.


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Read past issues: March 2015, April 2015May 2015, June 2015, July 2015November 2015 and December 2015, June 2016August 2016, September 2016, November 2016.

Series of Early Childhood Conversations

The Boston Opportunity Agenda launched a series of conversations for organizations serving children from Birth to Eight years old in Boston. Exploring most recent available data regarding child outcomes in Boston, these conversations center around current efforts that address the needs of young children and potential collective impact efforts to support infants, toddlers, young children and families throughout the city. Please sign up for the event and to register for the Early Education Convening mailing list to receive notifications for the next meeting.

BOA Report Card 6 coverNEW RELEASE

The Boston Opportunity Agenda

Sixth Annual Report Card

January 2017 


The 2017 Boston Opportunity Agenda Report Card, an annual measure of the City’s progress on key education metrics, found that high school graduation, college enrollment, and college completion rates continue to increase in Boston. The six-year college completion rate increased to 51.3 percent for 2009 graduates of the Boston Public Schools, an uptick from 50 percent for BPS graduates who completed high school in 2006.  The report also found that the high school graduation rate went up for all three types of schools.

While this progress is very encouraging, the news was not as positive for efforts to build a strong educational foundation.  In the 2015-2016 school year, 61 percent of incoming kindergarten students were determined to have the necessary early learning skills to succeed and progress, a decrease of three percentage points from the prior academic year.  In addition, third-grade reading proficiency levels remained steady at 33 percent per the PARCC assessment, while Boston Catholic schools and Boston Charter public schools saw dips from 79 percent to 74 percent and 61 percent to 55 percent, respectively.

Read the press release.


The Boston Opportunity Agenda in the News:

February 7, 2017, The Boston Globe, By the numbers

July 29, 2015, Bay State Banner, Mayor cuts ribbon on Connection Center

July 29, 2015, Bay State Banner, Education chief envisions high schools of the future

July 27, 2015, The Boston Globe, New resource center helps city youths make career connections

July 13, 2015, The Boston Globe, Editorial, A needed redesign for Boston schools

May 13, 2015, Bay State Banner, School officials soliciting ideas for high schools of the future

May 12, 2015, Learning Lab, WBUR, Mixed Feelings As Boston Sets Out To Redesign High Schools  

May 10, 2015, Boston Business Journal, Out of work and school, Boston's youth have new place to go for help

May 3, 2015, The Boston Globe, Boston invites public to reimagine high schools

January 20, 2015, The Boston Globe, Boston public school grads exceed charter-school peers: Graduates of Hub’s public schools exceed peers at charter schools

January 16, 2015, CommonWealth, Striving for urban school excellence: Boston leaders mark gains, big challenges remaining

Boston Opportunity Agenda Annual Report Cards

 BOA Report Card 6 cover 300   BOA Report Card cover 300  
BOA 4th Report Card 300    Boston Opportunity Agenda 3rd Report Card cover  
Boston Opportunity Agenda 2nd Report Card cover   Boston Opportunity Agenda 1st Report Card cover  


Thanks to groundbreaking reports by the nation’s
top education researchers we know how to create effective schools

Informing the Debate cover

Informing the Debate: Comparing Boston’s Charter, Pilot and Traditional Schools set a new standard in the search for effective schools.

Now its rigorously controlled research methodology, designed by a team led by Thomas Kane, Professor of Education and Economics at Harvard Graduate School of Education, has been duplicated independently in New York City, confirming the power of charter schools to close the achievement gap for minority students in urban schools.

NYC Charter Report cover The follow-up report, Out of the Debate and Into the Schools, uses the findings from Informing the Debate as a launching point to delve deeper into the issues that may explain differences in student outcomes – thus moving us out of the debate and into the schools. Out of the Debate cover


Additional Research

Leveraging Community College Innovations for Opportunity Youth: Reflections from Boston, May 9, 2016

Equity Matters in Collective Impact, Collective Impact Forum, June 8, 2015

Opportunity and Equity: Enrollment and Outcomes of Black and Latino Males in Boston Public Schools (2014)

The New Opportunity to Lead: A vision for education in Massachusetts for the next 20 years (2014)

Condition of Education in the Commonwealth (2013)
English Learners in Boston Public Schools: Enrollment, Engagement and Academic Outcomes, AY2003-AY2006 (2009)


View a Listing of all UNDERSTANDING BOSTON Education Reports