In 1998, a student teacher struggled to teach the book Johnny Tremain in a middle school classroom where most of the kids were reading three years below grade level. Her mentor teacher suggested she show them the movie. Instead, she founded her own school. From that single excellent public charter school, Amistad Academy, our Achievement First network was born. Since the beginning, we have always known that gaps in academic performance that fall along lines of race and income are caused by gaps in access and opportunity. And we have worked to right that wrong. When Amistad Academy opened in 1999, it served 84 New Haven fifth and sixth graders. Today, we serve 13,500 students in 36 schools in five cities across Connecticut, New York and Rhode Island. All of our students come to us through blind lottery. The majority are Black, Latino, and children from low-income families who will be the first in their families to graduate from college. Our students are proving that amazing things happen when potential meets opportunity.
The mission of AECI is to create a rigorous college prep academic program that provides students with a foundation of the necessary skills, knowledge, and practical experience to pursue a path leading to college and/or a career in the architecture, engineering, or construction industries. AECI believes that all of our students have the potential to be successful students and citizens. To that end, all staff members are tasked with developing the whole child. All staff members work together to ensure that all students’ academic, emotional, and social development is supported, cultivated, and challenged during their time at AECI.
Ascend is a network of K-12 public charter schools serving 4,000 students across 10 schools in Central Brooklyn. Our mission is to lead our students on a great intellectual journey, providing them with an exceptional education and placing them firmly on the path to success in college and beyond. We guide our students to think critically and independently and to enjoy education as an end in itself. We teach a rich and rigorous liberal arts curriculum that nurtures students’ natural curiosity about the world. We foster a positive, non-punitive school culture where students feel connected, empowered, and safe to take academic risks. Even our school buildings are designed to reflect our high aspirations for teaching and learning and the notable accomplishments that occur within our walls. To create this kind of vibrant learning community, we invest heavily in our faculty by providing ongoing professional training and support, and encourage our educators to collaborate closely and push each other to achieve great outcomes.
At Bedford Stuyvesant New Beginnings Charter School, an elementary and middle school proudly serving more than 650 scholars in grades K-8 in our neighborhood, families, educators and community members join together to create a supportive and rigorous academic environment for all students. Through the pursuit of 21st-century learning, project-based & service learning, and traditional coursework, students will be prepared to succeed in academically competitive schools as well as become responsible citizens of the global community.
Our school culture has been designed to support our specific population of students, in this community, and our framework develops opportunities that are local to our school and borough. We prioritize daily collaboration through our scheduling and school structure, while offering a higher level of autonomy and teacher creativity than many other public schools.
Beginning with Children is a small network of Brooklyn charter schools with a big purpose: to provide rich educational environments that nurture students’ intellect and ambitions and connect learning to the world beyond the classroom. Our schools, Community Partnership Charter School and Beginning with Children Charter School 2, put the needs of the whole student first, transcending the academic rigor of the classroom and nurturing the development of children from their formative years through college. Our students graduate with the knowledge, leadership skills and commitment to give back to their communities. And our alumni program, The Legacy Network, serves as the catalyst for our students’ continuing success in high school and college. The program provides mentoring, academic enrichment and a supportive social network to help our graduates make the critical transition to high school, college, and career.
Bronx Charter School for the Arts is a public elementary school founded on the principle that a rich and vibrant background in the arts is a key catalyst for the academic and social success of all students. Students receive daily instruction in theater, dance, music, and visual arts, and lessons in these subjects are integrated into the academic curriculum. We strive to serve as a model that encourages creativity and innovation in the classroom and inspires students to develop the intellectual and personal fortitude to realize their dreams.
We began enrolling students in 2005 and currently serve more than 310 students each year at our elementary school in the Hunts Point Section of the South Bronx. In February 2015, the New York State Board of Regents granted a full five-year renewal of the school’s charter through 2020, and in 2017 approved an expansion to launch a middle school. In fall 2018, Bronx Charter School for the Arts will launch a middle school that extends the Bronx Arts model, continues to encourage creativity and innovation in the classroom, and further prepares and inspires students to develop the intellectual and personal fortitude to realize their dreams.
Brooklyn Laboratory Charter Schools (“LAB”) is a network of free, public, college-prep charter schools located in downtown Brooklyn, NY. We provide our scholars with the academic foundation, digital literacy, and leadership skills necessary to excel in college and professional life as they grow as ethical leaders. The LAB Formula includes: More Time in School – Extended day, week, and school year focused on academic learning and unique enrichment activities (e.g., Robotics, Digital Media, Coding, Debate, Visual Arts); High Dose Tutoring – Personalized, small group tutoring from trained college graduates for at least two hours each day; Next Generation Learning – A college prep curriculum with Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math (STEAM)-focused enrichment activities to prepare scholars to succeed in jobs of the future.
Explore Schools is a network of public charter schools in educationally under-served communities in Brooklyn. Our mission is to provide students with the academic skills and critical-thinking abilities they need to succeed in a college-preparatory high school.
Explore Schools currently serves 2,000 students in eight schools. In order to provide our families with a high-quality public education option in their neighborhood, we give preference to students who live in the districts where our schools are located.
We know that all children can succeed in an environment with high expectations, rigorous academics, and caring and committed adults. We are committed to serving all students, including students with special needs and English Language Learners.
Great Oaks Charter School of New York City (GO-NYC) is a tuition-free public charter school located on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. The mission of GO-NYC is to prepare students for college success with a school culture of high expectations, exceptional teaching, high-dosage tutoring, and a strong focus on building relationships with students and their families.
Hebrew Public Charter Schools
Hebrew Public is leading a national movement of exceptional, diverse public charter schools that teach Modern Hebrew to children of all backgrounds and prepare them to be successful global citizens. To build a sustainable educational movement, Hebrew Public believes that it is critical that schools and educators are able to form alliances across the traditional boundaries of classrooms, schools and geography. Therefore, at the heart of our work is an effort to build an active, cohesive school network. We encourage and facilitate school leaders to share ideas, experiences, and strategies in order to address common concerns, issues, needs and goals. By coming together as a network, school leaders are able to provide tangible forms of peer level support, including the sharing of resources and collaborative programming. Teachers are able to share lesson plans and instructional resources through our on–line community.
Hebrew Public works with public charter schools and planning groups who focus on the instruction of the Hebrew language and culture, as well as the study of the culture and history of Israel and its immigrant communities. Hebrew Public provides schools within its network with access to a wealth of resources, professional development and training opportunities in Hebrew instruction through the proficiency-based approach, differentiated instruction, co-teaching models and student developed service learning projects.
Heketi Community Charter School is a community-grown charter school located in the Mott Haven section of the South Bronx, dedicated to providing a rigorous and nurturing environment for students while fostering a warm family-oriented school culture and a strong connection to the community at large. Heketi opened its doors in 2012, where it welcomed its very first cohort of bright ambitious students.
Our mission is to provide an exceptional educational solution through an integrated educational design with high expectations, extensive academic and social-emotional support, and a high level of family and community engagement.
La Cima Elementary Charter School
“La cima” is Spanish for the peak of a mountain. La Cima Elementary Charter School prepares students for academic and life-long success through a rigorous and relevant academic program. Our vision is to develop students who have intellectual capacity, social capital and emotional strength of character to be personally successful and to act as effective change-makers in their communities. Every member of the La Cima community is expected to demonstrate our principles of Community, Accountability, Reconciliation, and Effective Effort each day. They are essential to fulfilling our mission, achieving our mission as a school and as an integral part of the Brooklyn community.
Launch Charter School
Launch EL Charter School is part of a network of 12 EL Education (formerly Expeditionary Learning) and NYC Outward Bound schools in New York City and is the NYC network’s first charter school. EL is a proven educational model being implemented in over 150 district, charter and independent schools across the country. Launch’s mission is to prepare students in under-resourced communities to thrive in college and careers by providing a public education rooted in active learning experiences and powerful character development. We believe that students at all levels can be pushed and supported to do more than they think possible.
As an EL school, We believe that when a student is done with school and enters adult life, she will be judged for the rest of her life not by her performance on tests of basic skills, but by the quality of her work and the quality of her character. Our vision of student achievement therefore has three dimensions: Mastery of Academic Skills and Content, High-Quality Work, and Character.
Launch is opening an elementary school in the 2019-2020 school year to provide students with the opportunity to experience a K-8 education under the EL Education model, an approach that believes in creating classrooms where learning is “challenging, active, meaningful, character driven, and public.”
Bronx Lighthouse Charter School and Metropolitan Lighthouse Charter School, Bronx, New York provides opportunities for children to discover, achieve, and prepare for success in college, incorporating an arts-infused philosophy. We develop children’s critical decision-making skills to prepare them for success in life. We work relentlessly to achieve these outcomes through a self-sustaining model to transform children’s futures. We need people who are fearless, driven, and forward-thinking. We need people who share our passion for creativity and innovation. If you share our vision, join us.
Merrick Academy Queens Public Charter School (“Merrick Academy”) is the first charter school in Queens and was established to provide an academic environment where all children can reach their maximum potential. Founded in 2000 and chartered by SUNY Charter Schools Institute, Merrick Academy is located in the Springfield Gardens neighborhood of Queens.Merrick Academy focuses on student achievement in the critical core skills of Reading, Math and Language by offering more total time on the task of learning, a high degree of individualized instruction and a highly innovative academic curriculum which, together with the Common Core, will ensure students are college and career ready. In addition to a rigorous basic educational program, Merrick Academy offers an opportunity for students to participate and develop in the areas of Digital and Visual Art, Language, Music, Physical Education, Chess, and S.T.E.A.M courses.
Merrick Academy is a small, collegian, and all-inclusive learning community of students, educators, parents and community members working together toward the common purpose of providing an excellent educational experience for its students. The instructional day begins at 8:00 am and ends at 3:45pm. There are roughly 550 students in grades K-5 that enjoy the academic offerings at Merrick Academy.
National Heritage Academies (NHA) is a public, tuition-free, K-8 charter school organization. We are currently located in nine different states and run 84 schools in: CO, GA, IN, LA, MI, NY, NC, OH, and WI. We specifically have four schools located in the Brooklyn area.
NHA’s system of schools is designed to eliminate the achievement gap and provide a public school choice to families so that their children are prepared for success in high school, college, and beyond. Our teachers make a difference in the classroom and the communities we serve every day. We are committed to challenging each child to achieve.
Founded in 2014 PAVE Schools (PAVE) is a Charter Management Organization (CMO), operating a network of free K-8 public schools in Red Hook, Brooklyn and North Carolina. PAVE prepares Kindergarten to 8th Grade students to thrive in competitive high schools and four-year colleges. We provide our students with a rigorous academic program and a community built on the organization’s core values of Perseverance, Achievement, Vibrance and Excellent character (PAVE). We believe the strongest driver of student achievement is rigorous curriculum delivered by teachers with deep content knowledge. Through a comprehensive inquiry-based methodology, we inspire a love of learning. We prioritize strong intellectual preparation and masterful facilitation of student discourse, recognizing that our own skills and understanding of content must be exceptional in order to guide and motivate our students. PAVE provides all team members with the support, professional development, and resources that they need to be successful.
The Rosalyn Yalow Charter School is a K-8 grade school in District 9 of the Bronx, which opened September 1, 2015 with 211 K-1 students. Now in our fourth year, Yalow serves 450 K-4 students. It honors Nobel Laureate Rosalyn S. Yalow (1921-2011), a physicist and the second American woman to win the Nobel Prize in Medicine (1977). Dr. Yalow was a lifelong Bronx resident, raising two children there, where at the Bronx VA hospital she crafted her Nobel award-winning research in radioimmunoassay, a method initially used to measure insulin in the blood and expanded to cover many substances of biologic interest.
Our hope is that Dr. Yalow’s legacy will inspire a new generation of Bronx children to work hard at their education and strive for success. Our goal is to eliminate the learning achievement gap for economically disadvantaged urban children—including special needs students and English language learners—by using engaging and demanding education; a team teaching model, linking an experienced teacher with a licensed social worker in grades K-2 and with a teaching fellow in later grades; rich extracurricular activities (fencing, arts, chess) to educate the whole child; and family support counseling—all in order to graduate our students at or above grade level in literacy and math.
Uncommon Schools is the largest charter management organization in the Northeast, serving over 18,000 students across 52 schools with 22 schools in Brooklyn. Our mission is to start and manage outstanding public charter schools which prepare students to enter, succeed in and graduate from college, and today we are proud that over 80% of our graduates are on track to graduate from a four-year college or university. We know that without great teachers and leaders, nothing else matters. That’s why people development is at our core, and our thought leaders have published numerous books including Teach Like a Champion and Leverage Leadership. Uncommon is committed to building a talented team that reflects the diverse backgrounds and experiences of our students. We believe in providing staff with leadership positions and opportunities to grow their careers in education, and we provide professional development at all levels of the organization.
Voice Charter School
At Voice Charter Schools in Long Island City, Queens, we don’t just talk about our core values of Efficacy, Care, and Wonder– we live them. Ask any student, teacher, staff member or parent and they will tell you: what makes VOICE special is the unusually high level of care and trust that pervades our community and drives hard work.
Students know that teachers care about them and do everything in their power to help them learn. So students feel safe, work harder, and keep wondering. With support from administration and peers, teachers are constantly improving their own practices, sharing techniques, learning and collaborating more deeply.
The mission of Unity Prep is to empower students as scholars and citizens so they may lead fulfilling academic, personal, and professional lives. Unity Prep accomplishes this mission through three interdependent programs that reinforce one another and serve as the backbone of our school’s design. As students engage in each of these programs, we are committed to providing a level of support that is commensurate with the high expectations placed upon them: an rigorous liberal arts and science curriculum, enrichment & extra curricular programs, and a civic engagement program. This experience will equip our graduates with the knowledge and skills to enroll in and earn a degree from the college/post-secondary institution of their choice, obtain gainful employment in their desired field of expertise, and actively and positively contribute to the well being of their communities.