Unlocking Potential for Chicago Youth and Parents
Midtown Educational Foundation, through its Midtown Center for boys and Metro Achievement Center for girls, helps close the achievement gap for Chicago's urban youth ages eight through eighteen.
How do we accomplish this?
MEF integrates academics, virtues, and exposure to the world of opportunity
beyond the classroom for each child it serves.
Midtown and Metro programs engage parents and adult mentors in developing
students of strong character with a desire for academic excellence,
a college education, and service to others.
What makes MEF unique?
- MEF supports after-school and summertime enrichment programs for Chicago urban youth through the Midtown Center for boys and the Metro Achievement Center for girls. Midtown and Metro are "off-site" learning centers bringing together students from communities in need of educational resources all over the city of Chicago. We believe that a safe place out-of-school just for boys and just for girls creates a unique learning environment for the healthy development of a well-rounded child.
- While programs for the gifted or for remedial students are more readily available, MEF targets the untapped potential of those often forgotten in-between: the academically average student and their parents. We believe that both focusing on the 'academic middle' and proactively supporting parents achieve real gains, further helping schools achieve their mission to close the achievement gap.
- We believe that parents are the primary educators of their children, and consistent adult mentors are necessary for positive youth development. At his inauguration, Mayor Rahm Emanuel implored, "Parents must get off the sidelines and get involved with their child's education.
The most important door to a child's education is the front door of the home.
And nothing I do at the schools can ever replace that." By pairing each student with the same mentor throughout the year and helping parents get engaged in their child's academic and personal development, MEF unlocks the potential for success.
- View our brief MEF Video: "Chicago Needs MEF" (3 min.)
- Read more about Why MEF? Top 10 Reasons
- View the MEF Fact Sheet and Guidebook
We welcome students, parents, and volunteers from all backgrounds, regardless of race/ethnicity, faith, or culture. Our goal is to address the social needs of the Chicago urban community by providing education, character development, access, and exposure to students and parents most in need of our city's resources.
MEF programs are inspired by the social concerns of the Catholic Church and Opus Dei, a Catholic personal Prelature. Programs at Midtown and Metro are owned and managed by MEF and its Board of Directors; not by the Prelature of Opus Dei, which assumes responsibility for the opt-in Christian formation available to those who are interested.
At the heart of MEF's philosophy is the belief that everyone is A Very Important Person, worthy of respect and recognition and deserving of every opportunity to succeed.