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About Achievement First Summit Middle School

85 Edwards Street 
Hartford, CT 06120
Phone: 860-695-6200
Fax: 860-722-8805

Opened: August 2014
Grades: Five to seven (growing to five to eight)
Number of Students in 2016-17: 248


Achievement First Summit Middle provides students with the academic and character skills they need to graduate from top colleges, to succeed in a competitive world and to serve as the next generation of leaders in our community. AF Summit Middle’s commitment to excellence is a statement of the core values that drive our team’s thoughts, decisions and actions. These values are reinforced in the way we approach every task. Our values are not separate from the academic curriculum; they are embedded into every lesson inside and outside the classroom. 

The AF Summit Middle “Team & Family” is comprised of students, teachers, parents, staff and the surrounding community. We will all work together to help students reach the summit—college graduation. We will celebrate success as one team and then turn to the next challenge with focused urgency. We will face temporary failures as one team, and we will refuse to give up. Our team members will listen, help, comfort and support one another to get up and start again. 

School Leader

Benjamin Cruse is the founding principal of AF Summit Middle School. Prior to serving as principal at AF Summit Middle, Mr. Cruse participated in the yearlong principal-in-residence program at AF Hartford Academy Middle. Previously, he served as dean of students at AF Hartford Academy Middle for four years. During his tenure, Mr. Cruse led school culture work, coached and developed teachers, and served as the point person on all joyful school events and overall student/parent engagement. Mr. Cruse is committed to community service and founded a basketball program called Saturday Hoopsters in 2007. The program serves more than 500 Hartford children and all members of the staff are volunteers. Prior to his role as dean of students, Mr. Cruse served as the director of youth services at Leadership Greater Hartford for two years. He holds a B.A. in political science and history from the University of Pennsylvania. Mr. Cruse is bilingual, speaking English and Spanish, and was born and raised in Hartford where he still lives with his wife and young children.

Visit Our Schools

We are always eager for visitors to see firsthand the extraordinary teaching and learning taking place in our schoolsClick here to learn more about visiting an Achievement First school.