Andover Bread Loaf

Mission Statement

Andover Bread Loaf (ABL) reimagines education based on a pedagogy of care that, through writing and the arts, ignites change in youth, adults, and educators by providing the space, trust, and freedom for them to develop their intellectual, leadership, and collaborative skills. Using these tools, they can transform themselves and their communities while working toward social justice.

ABL’s Mission

Andover Bread Loaf promotes literacy and educational revitalization through the lens of social justice in the most under-resourced communities and school systems around the world, particularly in US urban communities and public schools.

ABL creates networks and collectives composed of youth, adults, schools, community organizations, and cultural institutions. Within these networks and collectives, ABL builds partnerships focused on developing programs and events for youth, educators, activists, and the community. We believe that the power of writing and sharing in community is essential when building community, creativity, and literacy.

Youth At the Center

At the heart of ABL is the Writing Leader program. ABL Writing Leaders are youth, trained in democratic pedagogies who work with other youth leaders to create, staff, and lead workshops and programs. The Writing Leaders are powerful educators and community activists, inspiring other youth and adults to love writing and to use it as a form of self-expression and community transformation.

Summer Programs


Lawrence Student Writers Workshop

A three-week intensive writing and arts program for students in grades 8-12, hosted at Phillips Academy.

Rising Loaves

Rising Loaves @ Lawrence History Center

A three-week exploration of arts and writing through history, designed for middle school students grades 5-8.


Slice @ Lawrence Boys and Girls Club

A two-week writing and arts program, and a weekly year-round program, for students in grades 2-5.

ABL Writing Workshop for Educators

The Writing Workshop for Educators is an intensive summer two-week graduate professional development program focusing on critical literacy for social justice, hosted by Andover Bread Loaf at Phillips Academy.

ABL Networks

Student at mic

Lawrence Collective

The Lawrence Collective network of schools, community organizations, and cultural institutions that support each other and offer youth development for students and professional development for adults.

Students Writing

National and International Network

Part of Middlebury College’s Bread Loaf Teacher Network(BLTN), ABL International connects educators and their students from ABL sites across the US and several other countries.


Next Generation Leadership Network

The Next Generation Leadership Network (NGLN) links ABL youth in Lawrence with youth around the country to develop and support social justice and cross-cultural collaboration across the sites.

Our Team

Meet the educators who make Andover Bread Loaf happen.

Jineyda Tapia

Instructor and Associate Director of Andover Bread Loaf

Rich Gorham

Associate Director, Andover Bread Loaf

[email protected]

Writing Leader Program

The ABL Writing Leader program is a national and international model for youth development. ABL Writing Leaders are youth ages 16-24 who work in schools and the community as educators, civic activists, and community builders while continuing their own education. Several Writing Leaders have become teachers and returned to their communities to work and live.

School Year Programs For Youth & Families

Andover Bread Loaf routinely partners with schools and community organizations to develop in-school and after-school programming through which ABL Writing Leaders, adult staff, and/or teaching artists lead workshops in creativity, literacy, and the arts.

Visiting Youth Artists

Andover Bread Loaf engages a network of youth artists and Writing Leaders who lead arts and writing workshops and programs in classrooms and community organizations. Examples include art, storytelling, creative writing, Spoken Word Poetry, and theater. Check out this video about ABL youth artists and Writing Leaders.

Family Literacy Events

ABL coordinates Family Literacy Events in partnership with schools and organizations around the country and the world. This simple yet powerful program engages all family members in intergenerational writing workshops hosted by ABL Writing Leaders, adult staff, and/or guest teaching artists. The ABL Family Literacy model has spread around the US and the world and is a proven strategy for engaging families. Check out this video of Family Literacy Night.

Self-care workshops

ABL embeds self-care practices in all programs and workshops, and also offers specific self-care programs for youth and adult educators to support and sustain them in work.

For more information about partnering with ABL for School Year Programming, contact ABL Network Coordinator, Amaryllis Lopez.

Get In Touch

Featured Video | Aspen Institute Webinar: Youth Unlocking Justice

ABL International Literacy Night features Our Haiti

Dear Breadloaf family and friends,

Please receive a small token of our gratitude and appreciation for organizing and realizing, on April 19, this wonderful Family Literacy Night for us and with us. Breadlove to you all from the Haitian ABLers and Breadloafers and from the students and staff of Collège Classique Féminin and Bridge Academy, Haiti.


In the fall of 2019, the Abbot Academy Fund awarded Andover Bread Loaf a grant to extend our work in Puerto Rico. As with the other grants AAF has awarded ABL, this one came at a key moment in our history. The grant will give a tremendous boost to ABL Puerto Rico, whose mission is to spread ABL pedagogies throughout the island.

The history of ABL and AAF dates back to 1985-86, when English Department colleagues, Jean St.Pierre, Elwin Sykes, and Lou Bernieri received AAF grants to develop the Phillips Academy outreach program that would be launched in 1987 as “Andover Bread Loaf”.

Since that launch, AAF has supported ABL programs that are flourishing nationally and internationally in some of the most under-resourced communities around the world. In 2004 AAF supported the creation of the Lawrence (MA) ABL Writing Leader program, a program that trains Lawrence youth to be teachers and civic activists. Over the years, ABL Writing Leaders have not only changed their own academic and professional trajectories, but have also offered writing and arts workshops for youth and professional development programs for adults in 8 states and 4 countries. In 2010 and 2013, AAF supported ABL Haiti, which brought a dozen Haitian teachers to ABL’s summer program. In partnership with these teachers, who have spread ABL pedagogies in their schools, ABL Haiti ran an international conference in Port-au-Prince in 2014 and is planning another international conference for August 2020.

ABL staff and students are deeply grateful for the support AAF has given us over the decades. Our history has been intertwined with AAF since ABL was just a dream that three English Department teachers had over 30 years ago.

If you have questions about making a gift to Andover Bread Loaf, please contact Jennifer Pieroni, director of advancement initiatives, at [email protected] or 978-749-4523.

City of Promise: ABL in Lawrence and Beyond
Andover Bread Loaf 2021 Annual Report