Our Vision
is To end inequity in education



The Space provides individualized academic support so that all students can overcome barriers, discover their learning power and access an exceptional education. We believe that every student has unique strengths and deserves the same investment of time, care and attention regardless of ability to pay or perceived potential. 

here’s how we do it


We Believe In Student-Driven Education
All students deserve an exceptional education aligned to their needs and goals. 


We Provide Individualized Attention and Care
All students have access to individualized, high-quality support so they can confidently guide their own education.


We Guide Students Through Challenges
Challenges are inevitable. Learning how to navigate through obstacles leads to growth. 


We Invest In Students
Young people have limitless potential and are the key to healthy, dynamic communities. They deserve our investment of time and resources. 



BEGINS WITH OUR WHY: The Space was founded by educators who were compelled to take action against the significant opportunity gap in education. They believed that all students should have access to transformative, individualized educational support that would level the playing field. Our programming is based on research that shows individualized tutoring positively affects not only academic performance but also confidence, self-advocacy and general well-being. All of which are predictors of success in school and in life. As educators, parents and citizens of the community, we have observed the challenges of navigating the educational system to accomplish academic goals. Together we can change this experience and help all 6-12 graders discover their learning power and navigate their education.



Students often feel disenfranchised with their education. They experience pressure from others around them to perform, yet they do not feel like school is relevant to their needs, goals or interests. We understand how hard it can be for students to move beyond limiting beliefs (I’m not smart, I can’t do math, I’ll never understand this) and embrace their unique strengths. This is why we created The Space, a welcoming place where 6-12 graders can make the connection between what they are learning in school and their future goals. Whether you need help doing your homework or preparing for life after high school, we believe that all students should be connected to the best opportunities and resources available. Together with our Learning Guides, we will help you navigate your education. 


Founding Story

The Space was founded in 2020 in response to the significant local opportunity gap in education. Local educators Naomi Runkel and Kate Ristow believed that all students should have access to the kind of transformative, individualized educational support that has historically been reserved for families who could afford it. This is why we developed a welcoming space where students of all backgrounds could feel comfortable getting individualized help with school, uncovering new interests, and exploring post-secondary opportunities with the help of supportive, caring educators. 

The Space programming is based on recent and ample research that suggests the efficacy of tutoring: individualized support positively affects not only academic performance but also confidence, self-advocacy skills, and general well-being, all of which are predictors of success in school.



In order to execute our mission we offer low-cost and free services to families who qualify for financial assistance. Last year we provided a total of 2,552 contact hours to our students. 71% of students who participated in our programs received full or partial financial assistance, amounting to $143,671.00.  The vast majority of students who receive scholarships receive full (100 %) funding. Our efforts are supported by a combination of earned income, grants, and individual donations. 


students served
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Program Hours
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Services Provided at Discounted Rates


Parents report their students Achieved Goals