Breakthrough Family Update – May 2020

Dear Breakthrough Families,


My name is Andrew McRae, and I am the new Chief Academic Officer at Breakthrough Schools. Before the school year dramatically changed, we had some great plans to come and meet with all of you this spring at each of our campuses to share some really exciting updates. Then, well, we all know what happened. So, we are bringing the show on the (virtual) road. Starting this week, we will be doing our first ever All Family Weekly Communications, starting with this one. Every week we’ll share an exciting update about what is happening in our family of schools.


Week 1: Breakthrough Academic Leadership Team

As our first update, I wanted to introduce you to our new Breakthrough Academic Leadership Team. This small but mighty team, made up of seasoned educators from within our schools - and some new outside talent as well - is charged with making sure your scholars receive the absolute best education (in any circumstances!). In the past, our academic leadership has been decentralized, which has sometimes made collaboration and best practice sharing difficult. As we prepare for next school year, that all changes. I am so proud of what our leaders and teachers have accomplished to bring our entire school community into Online Distance Learning, and I know that this amazing team is ready to navigate everything that lies ahead.

BPS Andrew McRae

Andrew McRae

Chief Academic Officer

First, a quick introduction of myself to those of you who don’t know me. I have spent the last 12 years working as a teacher, school leader, and administrator. Prior to Breakthrough, I was the Executive Director of KIPP Tulsa, and am so excited to be Breakthrough’s first Chief Academic Officer. My job and goal is to work with my team to make sure your scholars are receiving a world-class education during their entire time at Breakthrough.

BPS John McBride

John McBride

Head of Schools

John has helped grow Breakthrough into what it is today. Starting as a math teacher, John has served as a dean, principal, Model Education Leader for the Preps Schools, and is now stepping into a new role as Head of Schools. In his role, John is responsible for the overall quality of our schools and work to continually increase the effectiveness of our Principals, teachers, and staff.

BPS Hope Evans

Hope Evans

Managing Director of Schools

Next up is Hope Evans, who joins us from her most recent role as Chief Academic Officer of Alpha Public Schools in San Jose, CA. Hope began her teaching career as an elementary literacy teacher with Teach for America, and has served as a Founding Principal and Instructional Leadership Director. Hope is originally from Cleveland and we are so excited to welcome her back in such an important role!

BPS Chris O'Brien

Chris O’Brien

Managing Director of Schools

Chris is another Breakthrough veteran and Cleveland native, who has helped shape our family of schools into what it is today. Chris has more than 20 years in education across all types of public school settings, and has served as a teacher, coach, and principal at Breakthrough. In this new role, Chris and Hope together will work together with all our principals to ensure our schools are truly wonderful places for your scholars to grow and thrive.

BPS Sofia Roy

Sophia Roy

Managing Director of STEM

Founding Principal of our Citizens Leadership Academy Southeast middle school, Sophia joins our Network Academic Leadership team with a wide range of critical experience. A Teach for American Corp member in Louisiana, Sophia has worked as a teacher, coach, assistant principal, and principal. We are thrilled she will be leading our STEM initiatives, ensuring your students have access to the most forward-thinking tools and curriculum to prepare them for a bright future.

Kadeem Howard | Breakthrough Public Schools

Kadeem Howard

Managing Director of Student Services

Kadeem joins our Breakthrough leadership team with a truly remarkable background in special education and student services. Kadeem began his education career as a Teach for America Corp Member, and went on to serve as a Special Education Teacher and Leader at The Equity Project NYC and the Senior Director of Special Populations at Explore Schools in Brooklyn, NYC. We are so fortunate that Kadeem will be leading our student services work across all our schools.

So, that is our Breakthrough Academic Leadership team so far. As the team continues to evolve and add new members, we will actively keep you informed. I am so proud of this group of educators, who are so endlessly dedicated to the success of your scholars. No matter what comes our way, you can count on us to be here for you and your children. If you ever have any questions for any of us, please don’t hesitate to reach out. You can expect regular updates from our team going forward!

In the meantime, stay safe and healthy. We are living through unprecedented times, and I couldn’t be more grateful for a community like ours to get through this with. I’m sending you all the best.


Andrew McRae
Chief Academic Officer
Breakthrough Schools