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Middle School High School

Liberation Diploma Plus High School

Grades: 9-12
2865 West 19th Street
Brooklyn NY 11224
Phone: 718-946-6812

Our Insights

What’s Special

Small, alternative school serves older students well

The Downside

Few sports teams or typical high school activities

Liberation Diploma Plus High School, a tiny transfer school in Coney Island with only ten classroom teachers, serves older students who have accumulated few credits towards graduation. Liberation Diploma Plus does a better job than most transfer schools in getting students to graduate and go on to college, according to DOE statistics.

Principal April Leong, who founded the school in 2007, previously worked in alternative schools with pregnant and suspended students. Diploma Plus is a national network of schools designed to help at risk students earn high school diplomas and go to college. The organization provides a "network manager" and a "school coach" to offer professional development to the school.

As part of a Department of Education Learning to Work program, the school works with the CAMBA community organization which provides internships for students. In addition to taking Regents exams, students must maintain a portfolio of their work which chronicles their progress for teachers and which they present before they can graduate. Some earn college credit by taking College Now courses.

The school offers a year-round trimester schedule, including summer school, so students can accumulate credits faster. They also may attend an extended day program known as PM school and do independent study courses. Students planted a tree as part of a program to encourage community service and an undestanding of ecology. [See photo.]

Weekly small group advisories are led by a staff member who is responsible for keeping track of their students' progress in school and understanding their lives outside of school. Together with advisors, students create learning plans, setting academic and social-emotional goals. Teachers and advisors meet weekly to share information about students' academic strengths and weaknesses, according to the school's Comprehensive Educational Plan (CEP).

"When they have people who believe in them, not feel sorry for them, it increases their chance of success," Leong says of at risk students. 

At Liberation Diploma Plus, students typically take longer than four years to graduate and attendance is a struggle. But the school, which consistently gets an "A" on its Progress Reports, does better than most transfer schools in getting students who come in below grade level to graduate. Nearly half of the graduates go to college but, because of low passing rates on math Regents exams, most students need remedial work when they get to college. The school has begun offering small group and individual math tutoring to help boost scores and prepare students for college level work, according to the CEP.

Liberation Diploma Plus shares a building with HeartShare, a nonprofit organization that works with children and adults with developmental disabilities.

Special education: A special education teacher provides supports services to the 10-12 students with special needs.

Admissions: Students, 16 years and older may enroll throughout the year. They must have attended another school for at least one year, be behind in credits and have a minimum of 6th grade reading level. They should be commited to attending a fulltime high school. Interviews and diagnostic tests are given to prospective students. (Pamela Wheaton, web reports, November 2012)

Read more

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 2017-18 School Quality Guide

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
75% Citywide Average
Years of principal experience at this school

How do students perform academically?

From 2017-18 School Quality Guide

Transfer school graduation rate
54% Citywide Average
How many students graduate with test scores high enough to enroll at CUNY without remedial help?
45% Citywide Average
How many students take a college-level course or earn a professional certificate?
39% Citywide Average

Who does this school serve?

From 2018-19 Demographic Snapshot

Free or reduced priced lunch
Students with disabilities
English language learners

How does this school serve special populations?

From 2017-18 School Quality Guide

How many students with disabilities graduate in 4 years?
64% Citywide Average

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

Programs & Admissions

From the 2019 High School Directory

Liberation Diploma Plus High School
Admissions Method: Transfer


Language Courses



Boys PSAL teams


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

Contact & Location


Coney Island (District 21)
Trains: D Line, F Line, N Line, Q Line to Coney Island-Stillwell Ave
Buses: B36, B64, B68, B74, B82


April Leong
Parent Coordinator
Franky Jordan

Other Details

Shared campus?
This school is in its own building.
Metal detectors?

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