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Democracy Prep Charter Middle School

Grades: 6-8
2230 5th Avenue
Manhattan NY 10037
Phone: 212-281-1248
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Our Insights

What’s Special

Korean music and dance, lots of trips

The Downside

Strict discipline and high suspension rates

Democracy Prep Charter is a structured and challenging school with strong leadership, good test scores and orderly classrooms, according to school surveys. The schoolcombines strict discipline and a long academic day with trips, civic engagement and exposure to Korean music and dance. (High school students take four years of Korean language.)

The school day runs from 7:45 am and 4:00 pm, but many students don't leave until later due to tutoring, extra-curricular activities, a proctored study-hall and detention. Extracurricular activities may include sports, choir, dance, student government, storytelling, and Korean mask dance.

Like the other schools in the Democracy Prep network, the school has clear rules and high expectations. Students move from class to class in straight, silent lines. Countdown clocks keep middle school students on task, and for the most part, desks are arranged in pairs facing the front of the classroom.

High school classrooms are set up to facilitate greater class discussion, and the tone of classes is less structured than in the middle school. In one class we visited, students discussed the historical and political context of the music of artists like James Brown and B.B. King. In a chemistry class, students seemed to be covering advanced material with a focus on performing well on the Regents exam.

Students earn and lose fake dollars based on their behavior and academic performance and can use their dollars to participate in a variety of activities and trips.

While the structured environment is a defining feature of the Democracy Prep schools, the strict rules do not appeal to everybody. More than one-third of students say discipline is unfair, according to school surveys. The 2014-15 suspension rate (the most recently available data) was 27 percent, far above the statewide average of 3 percent. Any student can thrive at Democracy Prep, but you have to be able to work in a structured environment, External Affairs Associate, Amara Sillah said on our 2012 visit.

The focus on citizenship and democracy is reflected in a variety of activities. During election campaigns, students participate in a Get out the vote campaign to help Harlem residents identify where they should vote. In 2012, some students attended a campaign event for Barack Obama in Columbus, Ohio; others went to South Korea to study that countrys presidential election.

The middle school shares a building withPS 197and the high school shares a building withPS 92at 222 W. 134th Street.

SPECIAL EDUCATION: School founder, Seth Andrews, who had a learning disability as a child, said the school was designed to accommodate children with special needs.

ADMISSIONS: By lottery. Priority to District 5. Democracy Prep accepts new students at every grade level, depending on the number of spaces available. About two-thirds of the middle school students continue on to the high school. (Pauline Zaldonis, November 2012; updated, school data, 2017)

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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 2017-18 NYC School Survey

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained at this school?
98%
79% Citywide Average
How many students say they feel safe in the hallways, bathrooms and locker rooms?
88%
83% Citywide Average
How many students think bullying happens most or all of the time at this school?
42%
50% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
87%
84% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
85%
83% Citywide Average

From 2015-16 NY State Report Card

How many students were suspended?
28%
4% Citywide Average
Teacher turnover rate
21%
41% Citywide Average

How do students perform academically?

From 2018 State ELA+Math Results Summary

How many middle school students scored 3-4 on the state math exam?
56%
36% Citywide Average
How many middle school students scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
51%
44% Citywide Average

From 2016-17 School Quality Guide

How many 8th-graders earn high school credit?
0%
27% Citywide Average

From 2017 NY State Graduation Outcomes

How many graduates earn Advanced Regents diplomas?
91%
45% Citywide Average

Who does this school serve?

From 2017-18 Demographic Snapshot

Enrollment
693
Asian
1%
Black
66%
Hispanic
30%
White
1%
Other
2%
Free or reduced priced lunch
83%
Students with disabilities
17%
English language learners
5%

From 2016-17 School Quality Guide

Average daily attendance
89%
93% Citywide Average
How many students miss 18 or more days of school?
35%
22% Citywide Average

How does this school serve special populations?

From 2018 State ELA+Math Results Summary

How many students with disabilities scored 3-4 on the state math exam?
27%
15% Citywide Average
How many students with disabilities scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
26%
18% Citywide Average
How many English language learners scored 3-4 on the state math exam?
21%
14% Citywide Average
How many English language learners scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
0%
8% Citywide Average


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

Contact & Location

Location

Harlem (District 5)
Trains: 2 Line, 3 Line to 135th St
Buses: M1, M7, M102, Bx33

Contact

Principal
Tanya Nunez/Elisa Dimauro

Other Details

Shared campus?
Yes
This school shares the building with PS 197
Metal detectors?
No

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