The Apollo 20 Program is a bold initiative to transform public education in Houston and improve the academic achievement of all students. HISD’s partner in the Apollo 20 Program, Harvard University’s Education Innovation Laboratory, identified best practices and strategies from successful public and charter schools across the nation to implement in HISD.
The program launched in four high schools and five middle schools at the start of the 2010-2011 school year. Midway through the year, high school students had posted 26 to 41 percentage point gains in math. In addition, students' attendance rates at Apollo 20 campusesgrew, while the number of disciplinary suspensions declined. The program soon expanded to include elementary schools.
One of the five strategies executed in the school turnaround design was in-school tutoring, thus the birth of Apollo 20 Fellows.
Since its inception, Apollo 20 Fellows have spread beyond the initial 20 campuses in the program with promising results. Currently there are more than 300 fellows working at 28 different campuses across Houston.