Baltimore Emerging Scholars (BES)

Baltimore Emerging Scholars (BES) is CTY’s local enrichment program for Baltimore students who show high academic potential. The CTY BES School Year and Summer programs reach nearly 1,000 students annually, offering interdisciplinary courses in high-interest topics that are not typically taught in traditional curricula.

The six-week CTY BES Summer Program is facilitated by CTY at two sites in Baltimore City.

School Year Program

In partnership with Baltimore City Public Schools, CTY research staff have designed a 25-week extracurricular course to test students’ critical thinking skills and to further their academic interests through inquiry-based activities.

The Baltimore Emerging Scholars program design incorporates professional development and training for the school-based teachers who serve as program instructors. Before the program’s start, teachers participate in a training workshop focused on how best to teach the CTY BES curricula, led by the CTY BES co-directors, who manage the program year-round.

Course Types

Courses are interdisciplinary in nature and revolve around high-interest topics not typically taught in traditional curricula, such as:

  • Shaping Our World: Early Architecture (grade 2)
  • Builders and Shakers: New Engineers (grade 3)
  • To Infinity and Beyond: Space and Astronomy (grade 4)
  • A Connected World: Digital Literacy in the 21st Century (grade 5)
  • CTY's research team focuses on assessing participating students' cognitive abilities that may not be measured by standardized math and verbal tests.

Participating Schools

Since 2014, CTY BES has expanded to reach more than 20 schools across Baltimore City:

  • Belmont Elementary School
  • Cecil Elementary School
  • Commodore John Rogers Elementary School
  • Francis Scott Key Elementary School
  • Furman L. Templeton Preparatory Academy
  • Glenmount Elementary/Middle School
  • Gwynns Falls Elementary School
  • Hamilton Elementary/Middle School
  • Hampden Elementary/Middle School
  • Hampstead Hill Academy
  • Henderson-Hopkins School
  • Hilton Elementary School
  • Moravia Park Primary School
  • Mount Royal Elementary/Middle School
  • Midtown Academy
  • New Song Elementary/Middle School
  • North Bend Elementary/Middle School
  • Patterson Park Public Charter School
  • William Paca Elementary School
  • Windsor Hills Elementary/Middle School
  • Woodhome Elementary/Middle School

Summer Program

Since 2019, a Baltimore City Public Schools Learning in Extended Academic Program (LEAP) grant from the Maryland State Department of Education has funded CTY’s Baltimore Emerging Scholars (BES) Summer Program. Two sites on the east and west side of the city offer the free six-week program during which students work in small, interdisciplinary classes focused on science, math, and the humanities and receive individualized attention as they engage in hands-on learning. This version of the program is designed for students in grades 1-4.

On each day of the program, students participate in activity periods, social-emotional learning sessions, and two of the following classes (depending on their grade level):

  • Rising first graders: Toyology and Cloudy with a Chance of Science
  • Rising second graders: Behind the Mask: Superheroes Revealed and Kitchen Chemistry
  • Rising third graders: Number Sense and Science Spoilers
  • Rising fourth graders: Geometry & Spatial Sense and Through the Microscope

In order to participate in the program, students must attend a LEAP-eligible school and be identified as either Talent Development or not identified as gifted or advanced by the district. If you are interested in your student attending the CTY BES Summer Program, please complete the program application.

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