Our Mission

Open Doors Academy is a youth development model committed to breaking the cycle of multi-generational poverty. We work to protect, inspire, nurture and challenge adolescents to reach their full potential.

Our Vision

Open Doors Academy seeks to provide best-in-class services to its scholars, alumni and their families. Focusing on growing its footprint throughout Greater Cleveland, while advancing its reputation as a national leader in out-of-school education, ODA serves as a foundation of education, investing in the life-long learning of its staff, scholars, and families.

Who We Are

ODA is a youth development model committed to breaking the cycle of multi-generational poverty. We work to protect, inspire, nurture, and challenge adolescents to reach their full potential. ODA provides out-of-school time academic and enrichment programming to disadvantaged youth in Greater Cleveland. ODA originated in 1992 as a youth drop-in program at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Cleveland Heights, OH, serving Roxboro Middle School students. After honing its program approach and developing a research-based curriculum, ODA officially incorporated as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization in 2002.

Today, we operate out of 13 campuses with the capacity to serve over 600 youth and 1,800 family members through our comprehensive pipeline model of 5th grade through post-secondary completion. Since 2009, 100% of our scholars who have participated in three consecutive years of our Middle School Program have graduated high school and 96% have advanced to a post-secondary training option.

As we look to the future, ODA strives to become the nation’s leader in out-of-school time education. We are committed to the children, families, and communities that we serve and continue to grow our footprint in Greater Cleveland. Because of this growth, ODA is working to professionalize the field of OST education by showing how our program model can be scaled to other communities’ needs and by sharing our expertise and experiences with other communities interested in replicating ODA’s success with their own scholars.

In spring 2018, ODA was selected by the Ohio Dept. of Education as the state trainer for all grantees participating in Ohio’s 21st Century Community Learning Centers program. We have since established the Center for Out-of-School Advancement (COSA), a subsidiary of ODA, which serves as the statewide training and mentoring organization for out-of-school time programs. COSA provides professional development, one-on-one counseling, small group mentoring sessions, and other supportive services to 21st Century grantees.

Our Values

Shared Responsibility – Together, Open Doors Academy, the school, community, and parents share the responsibility for raising each youth in a safe and supportive environment that challenges them to reach their full potential.

Life Long Learning – Open Doors Academy believes that learning is not confined to childhood or the classroom alone, but takes place throughout life and in a wide range of situations.

Civility – Open Doors Academy seeks to create an environment that supports and encourages care, respect, and empathy while acknowledging the culture and humanity of others.

Perseverance – Open Doors Academy challenges all youth to defy the status quo in breaking through the glass ceiling to reach their dreams.

Culture of Excellence – Open Doors Academy staff, students, and parents reflect the desire to function at the highest levels possible in academics, relationships, character, and citizenship.