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Frank McCourt High School

Grades: 9-12
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Our Insights

What’s Special

Group projects and lots of writing

The Downside

No music, limited art instruction

Frank McCourt High School, founded in 2010, offers a variety of projects and group work, along with classes that integrate math and science. Students choose classes from a college-course-style handbook, some with titles like Economics of Colonialism and Race Studies. Housed in the Brandeis Educational Campus, this small school has a mix of students from different backgrounds and from all parts of the city.

Academics & Instruction: Ninth- and 10th-graders stay with the same group in classes throughout the day, building skills for successful group projects, including how to generate ideas, draft responses and revise their work. All students take four years of math and science, complete at least 20 hours of community service, and have opportunities to earn college credit by taking courses taught by Frank McCourt teachers that are certified by SUNY Albany.

Instead of English, 9th- and 10th-graders take a double period of humanities, blending literature and history. In 9th grade, they explore world religions using diverse texts like the graphic novel Persepolis, the novel Siddhartha, and the play "My Name is Asher Lev." In 10th grade, they analyze Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness to explore European colonialism in Africa. Writing is taught as a separate class.

In 11th and 12th grade, students choose humanities electives that range from the traditional, such as a course in Shakespeare, to the off-beat, like a course in participatory budgeting in which students nominate projects to be funded by the City Council.

Ninth- and 10th-graders take integrated math and science courses called ISM. Ninth grade ISM combines living environment and algebra (with some geometry); 10th grade combines chemistry and algebra II. Three days each week students take separate classes for math and science. Instruction on the remaining two days merges the subjects to focus on the practical applications.  For example, in ISM, 9th-graders may pretend they are advising a pharmaceutical company on what type of enzyme would be most marketable to treat lactose intolerance. They test how enzymes break down food at different temperatures and then plot the data on a graph using quadratic equations.  

Math and science courses for 11th- and 12th-graders range from the traditional, like calculus, to the unusual, like a course that teaches chemistry through cooking. 

Courses in the arts are limited. There is no music instruction but there’s a music club according to a list of clubs on the website.

Culture & Environment: The school uses a competency-based approach, meaning teachers acknowledge that students need chances to revise their thinking, their work, and their behavior in order to grow and improve. Students also get opportunities to share rituals, values and interests in school, and may join clubs aimed to build a healthy self-identity, such as the Black Student Union, Pride Club, Asian Heritage Club, Girls, Inc. Small advisory groups meet daily. A restorative practices team helps students work on skills to prevent and address harm and conflict.

Special Education & English as a New Language: The school offers co-teaching classes and individual support based on student need and family choice.

Building & Facilities: There are four other schools in the Brandeis Education Complex. The site includes a black box theater, dance studio, spin room and auditorium as well as tennis courts, a courtyard and garden. Students may participate in campus-wide PSAL sports teams. All students must pass through metal detectors to enter the building.

College & Career: College and career planning begins in 9th grade as part of advisory and includes a college trip each year. A college counselor works closely with every family to develop a college plan. (Lydie Raschka, web reports and questionnaire responses, January 2024)



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School Stats

Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average


How many students graduate in 4 years?
How many students with disabilities graduate in 4 years?
Average daily attendance
How many students miss 18 or more days of school?
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school offers enough activities and services for their children's needs?
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school works to achieve the goals of their students' IEPs?
From the 2021-22 School Quality Guide and 2020-21 NYC School Survey


Number of students
Citywide Average is 615


Low-income students
Students with disabilities
Multilingual learners
From the 2022-23 Demographic Snapshot

Safety & Vibe

How many students were suspended?
How many students say they feel safe in the hallways, bathrooms and locker rooms?
How many students think bullying happens most or all of the time at this school?
How many students say that some are bullied at their school because of their gender or sexual orientation?
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
From the 2020-21 NYC School Survey and 2019-20 NY State Report Card

Faculty & Staff

How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
Years of principal experience at this school
Citywide Average is 7
Number of students for each guidance counselor or social worker
Citywide Average is 157

Teachers’ Race/Ethnicity

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
Are teachers effective?
From the 2020-21 NYC School Survey, 2021-22 School Quality Guide, 2019-20 Report on School-Based Staff Demographics, 2021 Guidance Counselor Report, and this school's most recent Quality Review Report

Advanced Courses

Which students have access to advanced courses at this school? Learn more



Computer Science



Not offered in 2019-20

Advanced Foreign Language


AP/IB Arts, English, History or Social Science


AP/IB Math or Science

Not offered in 2019-20


Not offered in 2019-20
From unpublished, anonymized data from the 2021-22 school year provided by the New York State Education Department, brought to you by

College Readiness

How many students graduate with test scores high enough to enroll at CUNY without remedial help?
How many students take a college-level course or earn a professional certificate?
How many students who have graduated from this high school stay in college for at least 3 semesters?
From the 2020-21 and 2021-22 School Quality Guide
How many students filled out a FAFSA form by the end of their senior year?
From the 2022-23 FAFSA data released by Federal Student Aid, brought you by
For more information about our data sources, see About Our Data · More DOE statistics for this school

Programs & Admissions

From the 2024 High School Directory

Frank McCourt High School (A21A)

Admissions Method: Screened With Assessment


  • Average Course Grades - 20%
  • Interview/Online Form - 80%

Program Description:

Our school is a member of the Mastery Collaborative and committed to using cooperative groups to teach students skills and content. We focus on developing college and career readiness skills. For more information about how to complete this program's application requirements, please contact the school directly.


From the 2024 High School Directory

Advanced Courses

Algebra II (Advanced Math), AP Research, AP Seminar, Calculus (Advanced Math), Chemistry (Advanced Science), ELA (College Course [Uncredited]), Physics (Advanced Science), Science (College Course [Credited]), Science (College Course [Uncredited]), Social Studies (College Course [Credited]), Social Studies (College Course [Uncredited]), World Languages (Advanced World Languages)

Boys PSAL teams

Baseball, Basketball, Bowling, Soccer, Volleyball

Girls PSAL teams

Basketball, Bowling, Soccer, Softball, Tennis, Volleyball

Read about admissions, academics, and more at this school on NYCDOE’s MySchools

NYC Department of Education: MySchools

Contact & Location


145 West 84 Street
Manhattan NY 10024

Trains: 1 Line to 86th St; B Line, C Line to 81st St - Museum of Natural History

Buses: BxM2, M10, M104, M11, M5, M7, M79-SBS, M86-SBS


Principal: Danielle Salzberg

Parent Coordinator: Caren Austen


Other Details

Shared campus? Yes

This school shares the Louis D. Brandeis Educational Campus with four other schools

Uniforms required? No
Metal detectors? Yes

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