Dozens of African-American teenagers just finished a six-week algebra program at the West Angeles Church of God in Christ Youth Center in Los Angeles' Crenshaw neighborhood.
The program is part of the Summer Algebra Institute, one of 18 math academies statewide funded by California State University in an uncommon partnership with 18 African-American churches this summer. In sites located from Sacramento to Whittier, each enrolled around 550 students.
The institute's aim is to close a wide academic achievement gap between African-American students and those in other ethnic groups in California.
Educators reached out to the students' families through the churches. With their connections in the community, church leaders helped the program find qualified students.