Automotive High School
Certification in auto repair
Low attendance, poor graduation rate
Automotive High School has been through some turmoil in the past few years, but one thing has stayed solid: students can get certified to be mechanics through a hands-on auto repair program. A new principal has also helped to improve school safety, although there is still work to be done.
In addition to its well-established auto repair program, the school offers a pre-engineering program and an automotive business theme in which students learn computer repair and can get certified as a Microsoft Office Specialist.
The school has added several Advanced Placement classes in an effort to better prepare students for college. There are also now small learning communities and advisories for all first year students, who stay together throughout high school. School leaders hope this will help students connect to one another and to an adult in the building.
Indeed, the vast majority of students on the 2011-12 Learning Environment Survey said that their teachers expect them to continue their education after high school and that school staff is helpeful.
Still, there is clearly friction between school leaders and teachers. About 40 percent of teachers say the principal is not an effective manager, and a similar number don't trust her. A majority of teachers would not recommend the school to parents.
This conflict can't have been helped by the politics that have swirled around the school recently. In 2011, the school was named a "transformation school," eligible for hundreds of thousands of federal dollars. But in 2012, the Education Department announced it would close Automotive under the federal "turnaround" program. Under federal rules, the school would have changed its name and replaced half its staff. However, a court ordered the DOE not to carry out the turnaround plan and the school remained open. The teachers who had been dismissed then returned to the building.
School support staff say that the number of serious safety problems have dropped significantly under Principal Caterina Lafergola, who arrived in 2011. She hired an assistant principal in charge of security and has "established a personal connection with the kids," who are mostly boys, says a staff member at New Visions for Public Schools, which provides support to the school. Counseling in Schools also provides extra help.
But there are still concerns. Students on the 2011-12 Learning Environment Survey reported fighting and gang activity, and about a third of them said they didn't feel safe in hallways and locker rooms. Teachers said school safety agents were not respectful, but staff and students report that there is someone who works to resolve conflicts at the school.
School support staff are optimistic that the school's new leadership will push past the political turmoil and achieve the school's goal of combining an excellent automotive program with academic classes that prepare kids for college. (Meredith Kolodner, October 2012)
About the students
About the school
Is this school safe?
About the leadership
About the teachers
How many graduate?
Are students prepared for college?
How does this school serve English Language Learners?
How does this school serve students with disabilities?
Programs and Admissions
This Academy educates and prepares students for career opportunities in the automobile repair, collision, tuning, diagnosis, and other areas in this expanding industry. This rigorous 4-year sequence requires students to complete 1000 hours of work in the areas of engine performance, electronics, brakes, and transmissions. Students engage in industry-based assessments, competitions, Work Based Learning, and internships opportunities with our business partners. Successful completion of the program results in CTE Certification and ASE/NATEF entry-level certification allowing most students the opportunity to work if they chose to upon graduation.
This Academy prepares students for cutting-edge careers in experiential design and digital media. We teach an integrated approach based on four fundamentals: design thinking, visual communication, technology, and user experience. Students in the academy are strategic thinkers, producers, and technologists poised to lead innovation on a global level.
This Academy educates and prepares students for career opportunities in programming, database, administration, web design, robotics, and other areas in the expanding digital workplace. This rigorous curriculum includes computer-aided design using Project Lead The Way (PLTW) curriculum and hands-on application culminating in prototype development. Students complete a minimum of four math courses and a three-year engineering sequence by the time they graduate. Extracurricular opportunities include Robotics and SkillsUSA where they can continue to develop their skills.
Advanced Placement (AP) courses
AP U.S. History
Boys PSAL teams
Baseball, Basketball, Bowling, Football, Handball, Soccer, Volleyball, Wrestling
You may also like …
Brooklyn, NY 11222