Theater program that goes beyond acting
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)
Safety & Vibe
Faculty & Staff
CalculusNot offered in 2019-20
PhysicsNot offered in 2019-20
Advanced Foreign LanguageNot offered in 2019-20
AP/IB Arts, English, History or Social Science
AP/IB Math or ScienceNot offered in 2019-20
Programs & AdmissionsFrom the 2021 High School Directory
OfferingsFrom the 2021 High School Directory
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
Contact & Location
6565 Flatlands Avenue
Brooklyn NY 11236
Buses: B103, B47, B6, B82, BM2
This school shares the South Shore Educational Campus with five other schools