As you know, one of RBA’s unique differentiators – what makes us special in the complicated world of urban education in Chicago – is that we will soon be a boarding school.  We believe that offering this type of supportive environment will dramatically help to offset many of the challenges that Chicago children are faced with on a regular basis, ranging from exposure to violence to homelessness to the daily challenges of living below the poverty line.

However, here’s a secret: RBA is so much more than that.  We won’t stop at ‘just’ being the first boarding school in Chicago but rather, we are also dedicated to building the strongest curriculum in the city.  We’ve spent the last 4.5 years traveling the country, talking to dozens of experts, and diving into research studies in order to design what we think is the best curriculum around.  We’ve also purposefully hired faculty members who are at the top of their class when it comes to curriculum design and pedagogy.

These efforts have paid off and we are pleased to announce that our students exceeded national averages for their fall/winter growth on NWEA MAP testing!!! This is a tremendous win for us, although this is only the beginning.  We are committed to academic excellence and we will continue to modify our curriculum over time, thanks to the support of our internal team and also thanks to our collaboration with other national leaders.


In other news, we are excited to partner with the local company ClozTalkand you can now purchase RBA apparel on their website where a portion of all proceeds goes back to RBA! Please head to this link to check out the many options that you can purchase to show your support of RBA ranging from sweatshirts to yoga pants.  The portion of sales that goes back to RBA is much appreciated, but even better, the more our amazing supporters are spotted walking around town sporting RBA gear, the more we can get the word out about our efforts.


Lastly, we want to give a HUGE shout out to another amazing company, DeskCycle, who donated 10 DeskCycles to RBA. I reached out to this company myself after purchasing a DeskCycle for my own home office, where I realized that cycling while working helps me to stay focus and has the added benefit of bringing some extra cardio into my life.

RBA students use their DeskCycles (see photo above) both to help them focus during class, and also during movement and gym breaks.  Thank you so much, DeskCycle!!

Wishing you a wonderful week ahead,
Val Groth
RBA Founder & CEO