A lot of people have asked us what Map Academy stands for. Something about the short word makes people assume it’s an acronym. It’s not. But the map concept is very much part of the story.
Over two years ago, as we were beginning this journey to open this school, we made this map and used it to tell the story of the need for a different kind of high school in Plymouth that could meet the needs of kids who haven’t been successful inside the box of traditional schools. Each dot on that map is an actual Plymouth student. The red ones are all kids who dropped out without graduating. The green ones were currently enrolled in the existing Alternative programs and the yellow ones were middle school kids at high risk of struggling to meet high school milestones. The clusters of dots on that map are a powerful visual representation of the numbers of young people in Plymouth who are disconnected from school. Those 398 dots, and countless other teenagers we’ve worked with, represent so much potential and are the inspiration for Map Academy. Map Academy will put youth who are off the map back on paths toward successful futures, leading them to, through and beyond high school graduation. We look forward to hanging the original map in Map Academy’s main office once we open.