Bedford Stuyvesant Collegiate Uncommon Charter School

Grades: 5-8
800 Gates Avenue, 4th floor
Brooklyn NY 11221
Phone: 718-669-7460

Our Insights

What’s Special

High test scores

The Downside

Long, highly structured day may not be right for some students

Bedford Stuyvesant Collegiate, which serves grades 5 through 8, is part of Uncommon Schools, a large charter network that aims to get its largely low-income black and Latino students into college and give them the skills to succeed there.

To accomplish this, the school, like others in the network, provides middle school students with two periods of math and two of English—one focused on reading and one on writing—every day. Classes start in late August and students attend school from 7:40 a.m. to 4 p.m. Struggling students are encouraged to attend classes on Saturday.

The school traditionally outperforms other schools in the area by a substantial margin, and scores on the state English language arts exam have increased dramatically in recent years. All classes include students at a range of academic levels, and every 8th-grader takes the algebra and living environment Regents exams. About 90 percent pass.

The classroom style is traditional, with many students sitting in rows and some classroom time devoted to completing assignments. When students agree with an answer another student has given, they snap their fingers, a technique aimed at giving all children a chance to participate. School leaders say they promote hands-on learning and activities that children will enjoy. Living environment students seemed engaged—and even amused—by a lesson that used Cocoa Puffs cereal to illustrate aspects of natural selection.

The school is clean and quiet. Students wear uniforms. To minimize disruption and wasted time between classes, each grade has its own suite of classrooms where students spend much of their day.

While teachers agree the school is orderly, more than one-third of the students say discipline is unfair, according to school surveys. The network says it sets high expectations for students and, though it suspends children in some cases, tries to reinforce positive behavior and encourage students to reflect on any misbehavior. “Kids have to be safe and happy in a school in order to learn,” says network spokesperson Barbara Martinez.

Bedford Stuyvesant Collegiate offers some activities, such as a Pi Day celebration which ends with one student throwing a pie at a selected teacher, to lighten the mood. In addition to academic subjects, children all take performing arts, coding and physical education for part of the year. The school competes in a sports league with other Uncommon schools.

Students take several trips, with 8th-graders going to San Francisco for a week. Some are chosen by lottery to spend two weeks with children from other Uncommon schools at Camp Uncommon at Colby College in Waterville, Maine. The network hopes the experience will ease the “culture shock” that some black and Latino students experience when they go on to predominantly white colleges and universities.

Uncommon started with middle schools and has expanded to include elementary and high schools. The goal is for students to be in the network for grades k through 12. Eighth-graders from Bedford Stuyvesant Collegiate can go on to Uncommon Collegiate Charter High School.

Bedford Stuyvesant Collegiate has a growing, though still small, number of English language learners and has been doing outreach in the Spanish-speaking community. Students not yet proficient in English use Rosetta Stone and receive tutoring.

The school shares its slightly drab building on a residential street with two other middle schools: MS 267 Math, Science & Technology and La Cima, a charter elementary school. According to principal Justin Pigeon, the city Department of Education has chosen the building as a model for other co-locations throughout the city.

SPECIAL EDUCATION: Although it has fewer students with special needs than the surrounding community school district, Bedford Stuyvesant Collegiate offers one team teaching classes with a mix of general education and special education students at every grade level, as well as provides special education services to students in other classes.

ADMISSIONS: Lottery for grade 5 with preference to District 16. The school fills any vacancies in grades 6 through 8 from its waiting list. Applications are available from the school's website. (Gail Robinson, March 2018)

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 2019-20 NYC School Survey

How many students say they feel safe in the hallways, bathrooms and locker rooms?
89% Citywide Average
How many students think bullying happens most or all of the time at this school?
27% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
88% Citywide Average

From 2019-20 NY State Report Card

How many students were suspended?
2% Citywide Average

How do students perform academically?

From 2019 State ELA+Math Results Summary

How many elementary school students scored 3-4 on the state math exam?
61% Citywide Average
How many elementary school students scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
45% Citywide Average
How many middle school students scored 3-4 on the state math exam?
40% Citywide Average
How many middle school students scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
44% Citywide Average

From 2019-20 School Quality Guide

How many 8th-graders earn high school credit?
34% 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
92% Citywide Average
How many students miss 18 or more days of school?
26% Citywide Average

How does this school serve special populations?

From 2019 State ELA+Math Results Summary

How many students with disabilities scored 3-4 on the state math exam?
14% Citywide Average
How many students with disabilities scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
15% Citywide Average
How many English language learners scored 3-4 on the state math exam?
14% Citywide Average
How many English language learners scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
6% Citywide Average

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

Contact & Location


Bedford-Stuyvesant (District 16)
Trains: J Line, Z Line to Gates Ave
Buses: B15, B52, Q24


Ishani Mehta/Justin Pigeon

Other Details

Shared campus?
This school shares the building with MS 267 and La Cima Charter School
Metal detectors?

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