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Brooklyn Theatre Arts High School

Grades: 9-12
6565 Flatlands Avenue
Brooklyn NY
Phone: 718-968-1072

Our Insights

What’s Special

Theater program that goes beyond acting

The Downside

Metal detectors; some safety concerns in common areas

One of five small schools in the South Shore Educational Complex in Canarsie, Brooklyn Theater Arts High School has a humanities focus along with a Career and Technical Education program in theater. The school partners with Roundabout Theater Co.

Students have the opportunity to perform in two productions—a musical and a drama—every year. The school also offers classes in directing and other behind-the-stage theater skills. Many students take visual art, and the school provides extracurricular arts and theater-related activities including trips to performances. Students have the opportunity to travel to another country over the summer.

The school’s Quality Review report praises the school for its “safe, inclusive culture.” Students told the reviewer that the theater arts, which are used to probe sensitive topics such as race and gentrification, fostered the welcoming climate. School staff have said that theater serves to engage and interest students.

Although many enter with relatively low standardized test scores, Theater Arts has seen strong improvement in its graduation rate, which now is above the city average. Many students, though, graduate without being ready to do college work, a situation the school is focused on remedying. For high-performing students it offers a few Advanced Placement classes.

Theater Arts offers a number of supports, including a summer Bridge program for incoming 9th graders, small-group tutoring and a Saturday academy. To help them acclimate to high school, all 9th graders attend small group sessions led by high performing juniors and seniors.

Attendance, though, remains a problem, and a sizable percentage of students say they do not feel safe in the school’s common areas. That may arise partly from the school’s location at South Shore, which has had a history of safety issues. The campus is not near any subway lines and, to enter the building, students must go through metal detectors.

After several years where principals came and went with regularity, David Ward has been in the post since 2012.

Admissions: Theater Arts accepts student from throughout the city and uses the educational option method. It historically has not filled all of its seats and has some openings for incoming 10th graders. (Gail Robinson, DOE reports and interview, October 2018)


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School Stats

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

Is this school safe and well-run?

From 2018-19 NYC School Survey

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained at this school?
75% Citywide Average
How many students say they feel safe in the hallways, bathrooms and locker rooms?
86% Citywide Average
How many students think bullying happens most or all of the time at this school?
37% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
79% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
80% Citywide Average

From 2017-18 NY State Report Card

How many students were suspended?
2% Citywide Average

From this school's most recent Quality Review Report

Are teachers effective?

From 2018-19 School Quality Guide

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
76% Citywide Average
Years of principal experience at this school

How do students perform academically?

From 2018-19 School Quality Guide

How many students graduate in 4 years?
82% Citywide Average
How many students graduate with test scores high enough to enroll at CUNY without remedial help?
48% Citywide Average
How many students take a college-level course or earn a professional certificate?
41% Citywide Average
How many graduates stay enrolled in college for at least 3 semesters?
67% Citywide Average

Who does this school serve?

From 2019-20 Demographic Snapshot

Free or reduced priced lunch
Students with disabilities
English language learners

From 2018-19 School Quality Guide

How many students miss 18 or more days of school?
38% Citywide Average

For more information about our data sources, see About Our Data · More DOE statistics for this school

Programs & Admissions

From the 2021 High School Directory

Theater Arts
Admissions Method: Ed. Opt.


Language Courses


Advanced Placement (AP) courses

AP English Literature and Composition, AP English Language and Composition


Boys PSAL teams

Baseball, Basketball, Bowling, Football, Indoor Track, Outdoor Track, Soccer, Volleyball, Wrestling

Girls PSAL teams

Basketball, Bowling, Cross Country, Handball, Indoor Track, Outdoor Track, Softball, Volleyball

Read about admissions, academics, and more at this school on NYCDOE’s MySchools
NYC Department of Education: MySchools

Contact & Location


Canarsie (District 18)
Trains: N/A
Buses: B103, B47, B6, B82, BM2


David Ward
Parent Coordinator
Brian Holness

Other Details

Shared campus?
This school shares the South Shore Educational Campus with five other schools
Metal detectors?

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