Responding to Racial Injustice
June 1, 2020

Hello, Breakthrough Community, 

I am writing to address the deep pain and frustration that many of us in the Breakthrough community are feeling. Once again, we are confronted with the very real impact that systemic racism has on Black people in this country. We are devastated by the murders of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, George Floyd and the countless others that have come before. It is a lot to bear, and we know people are angry, sad, and just completely exhausted.

For a community like Breakthrough, where our students are forever inspiring us with the work that they do to make a better world, the contrast of discouraging moments like this can feel particularly stark – reminding us that there is still so much more work to be done. This week, that work begins by naming the grief and outrage felt by so many of us, and by providing an outlet for our community to come together. Though our students, Teaching Fellows and staff continue to be separated physically by the continued spread of COVID-19 and can’t be together in person to lift each other up, we are creating online spaces for anyone in our community who needs to talk and process, or just be together with others who are hurting.

Our Breakthrough students and their families are disproportionately impacted by systematic racism and violence. The urgency of our work at Breakthrough to effect change and to actively dismantle racism has never been more clear. As we support our students and teachers today, and prepare for our programming this summer, we are deeply focused on creating opportunities to directly address our own biases and openly discuss what it means to be anti-racist people and educators.

For any member of our community who is hurting today, please know that we’re listening. We see you, and we are here for you.

With Breakthrough Love,



Melanie Goins
Board Chair, Breakthrough Greater Boston


Below, we’ve included the messages and resources from our school and district partners:

Cambridge Public Schools
Somerville Public Schools
Boston Public Schools