The BARR Center (BARR) ensures all students have access to a high-quality education where adults know them personally, recognize their strengths and help them succeed. BARR equips schools to empower teachers and administrators to build deep relationships with students and harness the power of data to increase academic, social and emotional outcomes.
Why We Invested
The BARR Center (BARR) is a time-bound, whole-school support model that provides a comprehensive approach to meeting students’ needs. Over the course of three years, the organization equips schools with sustainable tools, processes, and mindsets to provide holistic supports to students that address their social, emotional, and academic needs. At the time of initial investment, the model was backed by three randomized controlled trials – the gold standard of evaluation – that demonstrated statistically significant impacts on teachers’ behaviors, students’ attitudes, and key academic outcomes. Of note, BARR students who qualified for free and reduced lunch were nearly 50 percent more likely to pass all core courses than the comparison group. BARR’s founder and executive director, Angela Jerabek, brings deep programmatic expertise paired with visionary leadership, which has enabled the organization to significantly expand while codifying the model and maintaining quality. Jerabek has established a talented and committed management team, many of whom have been with the organization for more than a decade.
Over the last decade, the BARR Center (BARR) has expanded from one school in Minnesota to more than 170 schools across nearly 20 states. The organization partners with three schools in Chicago and has grown from supporting 759 students in 2019 to 1,092 in 2020. BARR was recently awarded a multi-year grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to drastically expand programming on a national scale. Chicago Collegiate Charter School was selected as one of the anchor schools for this expansion project. The organization continues to prioritize strengthening its leadership team and core operations to support its long-term growth.
Investment launched in March 2019. Management support to begin at a later date.