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Seward Park Educational Campus
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Seward Park High School closed in 2006. For transcripts and proof of graduation, graduates should call the Education Department at 718-935-2009.
The building is now called Seward Park Educational Campus. It now houses five small high schools: High School for Dual Language and Asian Studies, New Design High School, Essex Street Academy, Lower Manhattan Arts Academy, and Urban Assembly Academy of Government and Law.
Each Seward Park Campus school has a distinct mission and its own dedicated space in the building where the majority of its classes are held.Three of the schools, Essex, LoMA and New Design are artsy and progressive.Urban Assembly, as it names suggests, infuses civics and law into many of its classes.All four schools serve a range of students, though the majority start school performing below grade level.Dual Language is the only screened admission school in the building.Its focus on dual language instruction in English and Mandarin draws a lot of high achieving and self-disciplined students.
The tone throughout the building is calm. Hallways dont get too congested during change of classes; students were relaxed and well-behaved during the lunchtimes we observed in the cafeteria.Like any high school, we have our incidents, but the kids are good.Its a safe place, a security guard said.Students in all schools must scan identification cards when entering the building, but there are no metal detectors.
Seward Park Campus schools share use of the buildings auditorium, gymnasium, cardio and weight room, cafeteria, swimming pool and library.The co-location of five schools in a building designed to house one creates logistical challenges.Each school has limited use of the gymnasium and cardio rooms, some schools have to share science labs, and some rooms serve multiple purposes, such as the black box theater that LoMA uses for drama instruction and at least one other school uses for yoga and step classes.
Student athletes in all five schools can participate in campus-wide PSAL teams. New York University partners with all schools in the building, providing a range of support services including counseling and tutoring.
Open Road of New York operates a skate park on the buildings roof top, a vibrant and expansive space decorated by graffiti artists from around the world in conjunction with New Design High School.Open Roads skate program is open to students in all Seward Park Campus schools.
Seward Park's imposing Lower East Side building, constructed in the first decade of the 20th century, had fallen into disrepair by the mid-1980s, even while housing far more students than it was intended to. The school suffered from high truancy and dropout rates, and its students, many of whom were immigrants or the children of immigrants, struggled to succeed academically. The original Seward Park High School was closed for poor performance and graduated its last class in 2006. Inquiries about the records or history of Seward Park High School should be directed to the Dual Language school.
The school was extensively profiled in Samuel Freedman's 1988 book, "Small Victories," which documented one year in the life of a hardworking Seward Park teacher. The book showed Seward Park to be a typical urban high school, whose 3,500 students ranged from the serious to the absent.(Laura Zingmond, October 2011)Read more