a school year between worlds


a documentary film 


from Mission Park, MA

"If I was at my other school, I'd probably be like one of those 'cool kids,' but one that's not learning nothing at all."

Dream High School: Dublin School


from Brighton, MA

"I always imagined going off to these big colleges when I didn't even know grammar." 

Dream High Schools: Concord Academy, Milton Academy,

Williston Northampton School


from Brockton, MA

"At my old school, they just expected us to pass through the year not to do anything with our lives -- or if they did they didn't show it too well. "

Dream High School: Tabor Academy




is an extra year of instruction between 8th and 9th grade, designed to create an environment that will transform promising public school students from the Greater Boston Area into competitive applicants for New England's top college-prep boarding schools.
BEACON follows Exavion, Meleah and Makai as they discover where they're going and where they've come from.

FAQs about Beacon Academy

  • Beacon selects 20-25 students each year for its program that runs from the summer through the spring

  • Guidance counselors and teachers in Boston Public Schools recommend promising students to Beacon

  • Beacon students have finished 8th grade in a Greater Boston Area public school, and choose to enter Beacon instead of continuing to high school in their neighborhood public schools

  • The average reading level for students entering Beacon is at the 5th grade

  • Students decide to enter Beacon to discover what a path away from public school could feel like

  • Students study for and take the SSAT an average of 5 times throughout this year, their scores can improve over 200%  

  • Students come from: Orchard Gardens, Urban Science Academy, The O'Brient and more

  • Students typically live in Dorchester, Roxbury, Hyde Park, Mattapan and other neighborhoods of Boston

  • Students receive scholarships to attend: St. Georges, Concord Academy, Buckingham Brown &     Nichols, Belmont Hill School, Boston College High, and more

  • 100% of Beacon's first 129 students graduated from high school


What the students