Group support and mentoring helps teens of color teens at Brookline High develop positive identities and build successful high school careers.
Through an innovative Brookline Center program, teens of color at Brookline High School strengthen themselves and each other through school-based mentoring groups: Brothers Towards Success (BTS) for young men and Sisters Toward Success (STS) for young women. B/STS helps students of color enrolled in Brookline through the METCO program (which brings Boston students to suburban school districts) learn to define themselves, position themselves for success, and develop resilience for high school and beyond. Teens work with mentors of color (Brookline Center and BHS staff, administrators, and high school seniors) to identify their strengths, solve problems, mobilize internal resources, navigate their school and home communities, and develop strategies to face common stress factors, including racism.
How It Works
In the spring of their eighth-grade year, B/STS introduces all incoming freshman METCO students to Brookline High School. During these facilitated single-gender meetings, rising ninth graders explore their hopes, aspirations, and concerns about the transition to high school. Students meet BHS staff of color, allies, and the METCO administration, as well as current BTS/STS high school students.
Beginning in September and throughout freshman year, B/STS meets weekly as a group with their mentors. In the safety of this affirming setting, young men and women share experiences of success and challenge, community and isolation, reframing potentially damaging experiences in ways that lead to greater resilience, positive identity formation, and successful futures.
Incoming freshmen in the METCO program will receive information about Brothers and Sisters Toward Success along with other Brookline High School enrollment materials. Students will also hear about it from their guidance counselors.