Bushwick School for Social Justice

400 IRVING AVENUE
BROOKLYN NY 11237 Map
Phone: (718) 381-7100
Website: Click here
Admissions: Open to Brooklyn residents
unzoned
Principal: Lucas Cooke
Neighborhood: Bushwick
District: 32
Grade range: 09 thru 12
Parent coordinator: FRANCES CARRASCO

What's special:

Cohesive staff committed to social justice.

The downside:

Students must pass through metal detectors

The InsideStats

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Our review

The Bushwick School for Social Justice has a cohesive staff committed to fostering students' social and emotional development as well as their academic progress. Housed in an air-conditioned annex of the Bushwick High School complex, the small school is set apart from the other small schools that share the building, the Academy of Urban Planning and Academy for Environmental Leadership. Mark Rush became principal in 2009, replacing Terry Byam who had been at the school since it opened in 2003.

Relations between students and teachers are warm. A high proportion of students responding to a 2011 DOE survey said their teachers inspire them to learn, and 100 percent of teachers responding to the survey said order and discipline are maintained at the school. The school offers parent workshops with tips on how to raise teens, and a full-time social worker is on hand to help students with any problems they may have. The school make a particular effort to encourage students to apply to college, and more than 80 percent of graduates do fill out college applications.

Although the staff makes a concerted effort to make students feel safe inside the building, the poor reputation of the old Bushwick High School, which closed in 2006, lingers. Students must pass through metal detectors to enter.

Admissions: The school, open to Brooklyn residents, plans to grow by a grade every year. Applicants are encouraged to attend an information meeting with their parents. (Clara Hemphill, interviews, September 2011)

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