Edmund W. Gordon Brooklyn Laboratory Charter School
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Variety of enrichment classes
Too soon to say
Brooklyn Lab Charter High School is an extension of the middle school of the same name. Unlike some charter schools, Brooklyn Lab admits students on every grade level depending on space.
The school offers a revolving menu of enrichment classes thay may include robotics, dance, computer programming, performing and visual arts and journalism and debate.
Founded as a middle school in 2014, the school won a $10 million grant in a nationwide contest sponsored by the Emerson Collective, the philanthropic organization attached to Apple Inc., to open a high school in 2017.
This location houses both middle and high school students. Most classrooms have two teachers. Recent college graduates, called fellows, offer small group instruction and enrichment for two hours in the middle school. The day runs from 8:30 am to 5:30 pm (except Wednesdays, which end at 1:15 pm so teachers can plan). The high school day runs from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm.
Children, called scholars, are frequently pulled out of the classroom for one-on-one help. "Because everyone, not just struggling students, gets extra help, it reduces the stigma children might feel," said Dr. Eric Tucker, Brooklyn Lab Charter co-founder and director.
The school has a thoughtful approach to training teachers. Some fellows become teachers in residence, and the school pays for their graduate education. Erin Mote, co-founder of the school (and Tucker's wife), organizes the steady flow of teachers-in-training through the foundation called InnovateEDU.
Brooklyn Lab Charter has two locations tucked away in a corner of downtown Brooklyn, close by the Manhattan Bridge entrance ramp. The Flatbush Avenue Extension building, shared with City Tech, houses most of the classrooms; a site, a block away on Jay Street, has most of the after school activities. Part of the middle school and the high school is located at 77 Sands Street.
ADMISSIONS: Lottery, preference to District 13. In its early years there has been space for students from outside the district and even the borough. Unlike many charters, Brooklyn Lab accepts students at every grade level, even after the school year has started. "Back-filling keeps us honest," says Tucker. (Pamela Wheaton, February 2017; high school update, web reports, January 2019)Read more