Reach Academics Launches One-of-a-Kind 2021 Summer Academy in Partnership with Ivy League Undergraduates through Curious Cardinals

Reach Academy

Reach Academy 2021 Summer Session for Young Men

During the prime years of their early adolescence, this generation of boys has observed many men in high powered positions of influence; few of whom model character traits worthy of respect and emulation.

Following a year of remote learning, Reach Academy is launching its founding Summer Session for Young Men in partnership with Curious Cardinals, composed of Ivy League undergraduates serving in a mentoring capacity. Running from June 14 – 25, the in-person and remote offerings focus on leadership and learning for students grades 7-10, in preparation for the post-pandemic world.

Actors Mary McCormack and Bradley Whitford lended their voices and support in a recent promotional video, sharing “a ray of hope – a program designed to re-spark a love of learning for our boys.” Based on relational teaching and applying the most current instructional methods, the summer focuses on what works best for young men’s learning. Courses include The Art of Argumentation, Preventing Pandemics, Engineering Your World, Finance Academy, and more. The full overview can be found at

Los Angeles is the only major market city in the U.S. currently without an independent all-boys middle school. Reach Academy for Young Men is committed to developing a diverse community to fulfill its mission of providing a strong, humanistic education for all students. With this priority in mind, financial assistance is available and the All Saint’s location was chosen with close public transit access. Reach Academy teachers also come from top colleges and universities in the U.S.

Reach Academics was founded by writer, consultant, 25-year educator, administrator and board member Nat Damon. He has written three books, the first of which, Time to Teach: Time to Reach: Expert Teachers Give Voice to the Power of Relational Teaching was released in May 2018. Time to Teach: Time To Reach demonstrates that teacher effectiveness cannot be quantitatively measured through student test scores, and that excellent teachers are defined by the power of their student relationships. Relational teaching supports a stronger and broader approach to the teaching vocation.

During this past year of remote school, boys have missed out on the power of real-life connection that the traditional classroom provides. Being locked up at home is neither an optimal nor even a natural state for growing young men. Loneliness, depression, and hopelessness have profoundly impacted many boys. Reach Academy capitalizes on the power of mentor-based relationships. Its hybrid model creates opportunities for young men to enrich themselves in dynamic courses taught by engaging teachers, all male, all from diverse backgrounds. The off-screen program focuses on leadership, teamwork, physical and emotional wellness and service. Reach Academy pledges to respark the love of learning and leadership after a year like none either.

“During the prime years of their early adolescence, this generation of boys has observed many men in high powered positions of influence; few of whom model character traits worthy of respect and emulation,” Damon says. “On a personal note, I am moved by how several narratives came together in the creation of this program: The co-founder of Curious Cardinals is a former student of mine; I’m currently the middle school director at an all girls school, The Archer School for Girls; my own middle school years were spent attending an all-boys school and being a counselor at an all boys overnight camp; and Reach Academy, while non-sectarian, happens to be located in the classroom building of an Episcopal church.”

About Reach Academics
Reach Academics launched in 2019 after Founder Nat Damon published Time to Teach: Time to Reach – Expert Teachers Give Voice to the Power of Relational Teaching. Reach partners with constituents throughout school communities – teachers, students, parents, staff, and administrators – to “thicken” their relational culture, with a focus on the children and the adults who place them in their care, by spotlighting the centrality of relationships in teaching and learning. Key leaders in educational research are discovering the connection of emotions and cognition. Reach Academics empowers classrooms to become expert in building and maintaining these relational elements. Damon’s podcast, “Reach, Teach, Talk” completed its first season in October 2020 and will begin its second season in September 2021.

Share article on social media or email: