Below are some of the most common questions people have about High Jump. Feel free to contact us if you still can’t find what you are looking for.

  • General +

    • What are the benefits of High Jump?

      • Strengthen writing, reading and math skills through activities such as dissecting a sheep’s brain (Biology), solving complex problems (Algebra and Logic), creating podcast, reading novels and writing papers (Language Arts), exploring historical and current events (Issues & Ideas) and studying exceptional people (Learners & Leaders)
      • Students sharpen their critical thinking, note taking, organization and studying skills, and increase self-confidence
      • Meet new friends who value learning and have dreams of high achievement
      • High School entrance exam test prep, school visits and financial aid/scholarships counseling
    • Do students go on field trips?

      Throughout the year, classroom study is complemented by field trips to local cultural and educational institutions such as The Art Institute, Chicago History Museum, Chicago Shakespeare Theatre and The Steppenwolf Theatre. The summer sessions begins with a three-day outdoor education trip to Lorado Taft at the Northern Illinois University Campus in Oregon, Illinois. Students are able to explore nature, participate in trust building exercises and build leadership skills.

    • Do students get homework at High Jump?

      Yes. Students enrolled in the High Jump program take part in rigorous academic classes. Students are expected to complete all assigned homework on time.

    • Does High Jump offer sports?

      High Jump is an academic enrichment program and focuses on academic subjects such as, science, math, and language arts. During the summer session, we offer a Physical Education and Health class that allows the students to participate in sports activities.

    • Who pays for High Jump?

      High Jump is tuition free for its students.  The program is entirely supported through contributions from local foundations and from donors.

    • What college prep high schools do High Jump alumni attend?

      The alumni of High Jump attend a wide variety of highly ranked college preparatory high schools in Chicago and other areas of the country. They range from independent day and boarding schools to selective enrollment public and parochial schools. For a list of schools, click here.

    • Who teaches High Jump classes?

      The High Jump teaching staff includes award-winning Chicago Public Schools teachers, teachers from area independent schools, and instructors from local universities.

    • How long is the High Jump program?

      High Jump is a 2-year course of study.

      • Students attend High Jump for six week during the summer, and approximately three Saturdays a month during the school year.
    • Where does High Jump meet?

      High Jump classes are held on the campuses of its three school partners: Latin School of Chicago, the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools, and Francis W. Parker School.

    • What are some of the classes that students take in High Jump?

      The core program encompasses mathematics, science, reading, writing, and the humanities. Students also engage in theater and art classes that contain a writing component.

    • How many students are in High Jump?

      High Jump has grown steadily over two decades, enrolling 12 to 15 students in its early cohorts of seventh and eighth graders; the program expanded to 80 students in 1999, and 130 in 2002. In summer 2012, High Jump increased its enrollment by 88 percent with an expansion to a third campus at the Francis W. Parker. This summer, High Jump will be serving 280 students annually.

    • How does High Jump cultivate “future leaders”?

      High Jump’s instructional approach fosters independent, analytical thinking, self-advocacy, and self-expression. High Jump gives students many opportunities to present to peer and adult audiences, and explicitly teaches the study skills and decorum required to become better learners and leaders. Students have peer role models in the form of High Jump alumni who serve as their mentors and support network. A career show-and-tell day of accomplished professionals inspires High Jump students and expands their vision of paths they might pursue. And in the class Leaders and Learners, students study notable leaders, identify leadership qualities, and reflect on their own corresponding and complementary abilities.

    • Who is High Jump for?

      High Jump recruits middle school students from Chicago neighborhood elementary schools—not selective gifted and talented schools—and targets children who show academic ambition and potential. The student body reflects the diversity of the Chicago metropolitan area.

  • Applying +

    • What are the requirements to graduate?

      High Jump students must maintain a B average or better throughout their time in the program, at High Jump and at their regular schools. They must also complete all of their class work satisfactorily.

    • How does High Jump help students apply to high school?

      High Jump offers a High School Counseling class for all its students. In this class, the students learn about different types of college prep high schools as well as the scholarships and financial aid they can obtain.

      High Jump also hosts an annual high school fair in the fall. This fair brings together representatives from a variety of private, parochial, boarding, and selective enrollment public schools. Students and parents also participate in a series of workshops to ask questions about the schools and get informational brochures and applications.

    • Can recommendations be mailed separately?

      Yes. References who wish to send in their recommendations separately can mail them to: High Jump, Attn: Recruitment & Admissions, 59 W. North Blvd., Chicago, IL 60610.

    • When is the application deadline?

      Check back for the 2014 application deadline.

    • What is the application process?

      Sixth grade students must submit a complete application (see application check list), a copy of a current 6th report card, a copy of the final 5th grade report card and a copy of his/her 5th grade standardized test scores. Parents/guardians must provide proof of income and complete financial eligibility forms.

    • Does a student have to have certain grades to be eligible for High Jump?

      High Jump students rank at the top of their class in their elementary schools. We expect High Jump students to maintain grades of B and above throughout their time in High Jump and at school.

    • Who is eligible to apply to High Jump?

      Sixth grade students who demonstrate strong academic potential, value learning, and have dreams of excelling academically. Determined learners who would like to develop critical thinking and problem solving skills in writing, algebra, social studies, science, theatre and art.

  • Other +

    • How can I contribute to High Jump?

      To provide deserving students with the high quality of programming offered by High Jump, we depend on the generous gifts of donors. If you wish to make a contribution, become a sponsor, or make an in-kind gift, please call the High Jump office at 312.582.7704, or email Jill Reid.


High Jump • 59 W. North Blvd. Chicago, IL 60610 • 312.582.7700 • ask@highjumpchicago.org • Si tiene alguna pregunta o desea hablar con alguien en español, favor de llamar al 312.582.7700.