Middle grades educators gather together to work on relationship-based problems of practice that are student-centered and equity-based.

The To&Through Middle Grades Network (MGN) is a cohort of public middle schools in Chicago dedicated to creating more equitable and supportive educational environments where middle grades students can thrive. The network seeks to build the capacity of practitioners to understand the developmental, social-emotional, and non-academic factors critical for student success and to make changes in practice that improve middle grades indicators for success in high school and beyond. 

Practitioners from selected schools participate in customized professional learning and receive dedicated in-school coaching as they engage in a student-centered improvement process grounded in data, research, and the expertise of participating schools.  The ultimate goal of the MGN is to build school capacity and develop best practices for middle grades success that can be implemented district-wide.

The MGN is accepting applications for its second cohort of schools until January 14, 2022. Learn more.

As part of the network, schools will participate in an 18-month improvement arc that includes four distinct phases:


MGN Timeline


MGN school team working together at the kick off session.

MGN Pilot Cohort

The pilot cohort of MGN schools includes Brighton Park Elementary School, Columbia Explorers Academy, Florence Nightingale Elementary School, Hernandez Middle School, John B. Drake Elementary School, and the UChicago Charter School Woodlawn (UCW) Middle School. The cohort is focused on developing and testing solutions related to a centralized problem of practice.

Middle Grades Success Resources

Middle Grades Success Resources

Our collection of middle grades success resources includes guides, research briefs, and professional development activities that are curated or produced by MGN. The resources are centered around providing educators with research-based knowledge and strategies they need to move the metrics that matter most for middle grades success.