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Bushwick Leaders High School for Academic Excellence

Grades: 9-12
797 Bushwick Avenue
Brooklyn NY 11221
Phone: 718-919-4212

Our Insights

What’s Special

Dual language Spanish program

The Downside

Poor attendance

Bushwick Leaders High School is a tiny school that strives to give students who struggled in middle school the individual attention they need to catch up and graduate. Most students speak Spanish at home. The school opened a dual language Spanish program in 2018. 

The school serves primarily the Bushwick community where most of its students live, though some travel from East New York, Brownsville, Bedford-Stuyvesant, Williamsburg and Cypress Hills, according to the Comprehensive Educational Plan

Teachers schedule extra long periods of math and reading to boost the skills of incoming students who have fallen behind in middle school. Attendance is a struggle; more than half the students miss at least a month of school. 

Students are placed in small, gender-based advisory groups for extra support. Good Shepherd Services provides during- and after-school tutoring and instruction in small groups. They also offer gym, art, music, boxing and dance classes. 

Opened in 2003, Bushwick Leaders is affiliated with East Brooklyn Congregations, a consortium of churches and homeowners' associations that works to rebuild communities in Brownsville, East New York and Bushwick. Long-time principal Catherine Reilly has spent more than 30 years in the neighborhood as an educator, guidance counselor, advocate and principal.

The school is housed in a 19th century building that was once a home for the aged of the Roman Catholic Little Sisters of Sorrow. The building has renovated science labs and a library with a multimedia theater, wireless laptops and two lounge areas. The library is named after Frank J. Bisignano, the chief administrative officer at JPMorgan Chase who has helped raise money for the school. 

Admissions: Educational option. The school seeks students with a range of academic performance. (Lydie Raschka, web reports, December 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 2019-20 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

From 2019-20 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 2019-20 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 2019-20 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 2020-21 Demographic Snapshot

Free or reduced priced lunch
Students with disabilities
English language learners

From 2019-20 School Quality Guide

Average daily attendance
87% Citywide Average
How many students miss 18 or more days of school?
38% Citywide Average

From 2020 School Directories

This school offers Dual Language classes in Spanish.

How does this school serve special populations?

From 2019-20 School Quality Guide

How many students with disabilities graduate in 4 years?
66% Citywide Average
How many English language learners graduate in 4 years?
68% 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

Bushwick Leaders High School for Academic Excellence
Admissions Method: Ed. Opt.
Dual Language Spanish
Admissions Method: Screened: Language
Program Description:

Dual Language programs are designed to integrate English Language Learners with English-proficient students to receive content instruction in English and a target language.


Language Courses


Advanced Placement (AP) courses

AP Spanish Language and Culture, AP Human Geography, AP Computer Science Principles, AP English Language and Composition, AP United States History, AP Environmental Science


Boys PSAL teams

Baseball, Basketball, Handball, Soccer

Girls PSAL teams

Basketball, Softball, Tennis, Volleyball

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

Contact & Location


Bushwick (District 32)
Trains: J Line to Kosciusko St; M Line to Central Ave; Z Line to Myrtle Ave
Buses: B38, B46, B46-SBS, B47, B52, B54, B60, M Shuttle Bus, Q24


Catherine Reilly
Parent Coordinator
Melissa De Los Santos

Other Details

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

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