High School for Civil Rights

Grades 9-12
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What’s Special

Law and debate team, courtroom on campus

The Downside

Low attendance

Our Review

The High School for Civil Rights has expanded its theme to include a focus on law. Students can take classes on Constitutional law and participate in a real Youth Court in the school's onsite court room. There is P.M. school and extra tutoring for the many students who come in below grade level. An experienced staff is quick to address safety concerns, but low attendance persists.

Many students come to Civil Rights in part to participate in the high-powered sports teams that dominate the Jefferson campus where the school is located. To keep them engaged academically after the sports season has ended, the school offers extra classes like forensic science and street law and has an extended day, or P.M. school, which runs from 1 p.m. until 7 p.m. There are also double periods in some core subjects, lunch-time tutoring and Saturday school. A summer bridge program and a 9th grade coordinator works to capture students' interest when they first arrive.

High-achieving students can choose from several AP classes, including calculus, U.S. history and English.

Principal Michael Steele, who has led the school since 2005, is hoping to get help from the mayor's male leadership initiative to boost flagging attendance. He is also planning to offer more incentives and rewards for good attendance. "We have very experienced teachers here," said Steele, who believes in a combination of traditional discipline and emotional support. "We try to make it a home away from home."

Located in the highest crime precinct in the city, the schools on the Jefferson campus have worked with the NYPD to create a safe passageway to and from the school. The same problems that exist in the neighborhood and surrounding housing projects seep into the school. All students must pass through metal detectors. Guards were courteous the day we visited, but security is tight and the process can be intimidating.

Inside the school, hallways were orderly and classrooms were quiet. Groups of students who tried to linger in the hallways were sheparded to class by vigilant hall monitors.

College admissions: There is a dedicated college advisor who leads a college prep class every week. A teacher assigned to help with SAT prep. Students mostly attend CUNY and SUNY schools and colleges such as Ithaca College and University of Connecticut.

Special education: There are Integrated Co-teaching classes with two teachers.

After school: The campus hums after school ends. There are numerous high-powered sports teams shared with other schools in Jefferson, academic tutoring and clubs such as cheerleading and robotics.

Admissions: Priority goes to Brooklyn students and residents who attend an information session. (Meredith Kolodner, May 2012)

About the students

Enrollment
284
Asian
1.1%
Black
74.3%
Hispanic
21.1%
White
2.1%
Other
1.4%
Free or reduced priced lunch
73%
Students with disabilities
23%
English language learners
7%
Male
60%

About the school

Shared campus?
Yes
This school shares the Thomas Jefferson Educational Campus with three other schools
Uniforms required?
No
Metal detectors?
Yes
How crowded? (Full is 100%)
80%
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Attendance

Average daily attendance
73%
85% Citywide Average
How many students are chronically absent?
69%
42% Citywide Average

Is this school safe?

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained at this school?
82%
77% Citywide Average
How many students think bullying happens most or all of the time at this school?
40%
37% Citywide Average
How many students say they feel safe in the hallways, bathrooms and locker rooms?
87%
85% Citywide Average
How many students say most students treat each other with respect?
54%
57% Citywide Average

About the leadership

Years of principal experience at this school
9.9
5.3 Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
75%
80% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal has a clear vision for this school?
75%
85% Citywide Average
How many teachers trust the principal?
59%
80% Citywide Average

About the teachers

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
95%
73% Citywide Average
Teacher attendance
97%
97% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
58%
81% Citywide Average
How many teachers think the staff collaborate to make this school run effectively?
75%
86% Citywide Average
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Arts offerings

This school has 3 dedicated spaces for Music, Visual arts, and Media arts
This school has 1 licensed art teacher in Visual arts (part-time)

Engaging curriculum?

How many students say this school offers enough programs, classes and activities to keep them interested?
77%
72% Citywide Average
How many students say they are challenged in most or all of their classes?
45%
54% Citywide Average
How many students say the programs, classes and activities here encourage them to develop talent outside academics?
79%
71% Citywide Average
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

How many graduate?

How many students graduate in 4 years?
65%
77% Citywide Average
How many graduates earn Advanced Regents diplomas?
1%
11% Citywide Average
How many students drop out?
13%
10% Citywide Average

Are students prepared for college?

How many students graduate with test scores high enough to enroll at CUNY without remedial help?
4%
32% Citywide Average
How many students take a college-level course or earn a professional certificate?
14%
41% Citywide Average
How many graduate and enter college within 18 months?
36%
63% Citywide Average
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

How does this school serve English Language Learners?

How many English language learners graduate in 4 years?
71%
65% Citywide Average

How does this school serve students with disabilities?

This school offers self-contained classes
This school offers team teaching (ICT)
How many students say that students with disabilities are included in all activities?
67%
68% Citywide Average
How many special ed students graduate in 4 years?
46%
60% Citywide Average
For more information about our data sources, see About Our Data

Programs and Admissions

High School for Civil Rights and Law
Admissions Method: Limited Unscreened
Program Description

Curriculum emphasizes issues relating to civil rights awareness and the American Constitution.

Academics

Language Courses

Spanish

Sports

Boys PSAL teams

Baseball, Basketball, Cross Country, Football, Indoor Track, Outdoor Track, Soccer, Volleyball

Girls PSAL teams

Basketball, Flag Football, Indoor Track, Outdoor Track, Soccer, Volleyball

Coed PSAL teams

Stunt

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NYC Department of Education: School Finder

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Location

400 Pennsylvania Avenue
Brooklyn NY 11207
East New York (District 19)
Trains: 3 to Pennsylvania Ave; C to Van Siclen Ave; L to Livonia Ave
Buses: B14, B15, B20, B83

Contact

Phone
718-922-6289
Principal
Michael Steele
Parent Coordinator
Karen Moore