East Harlem Pride School Collaboration

We conceived of a unique strategic partnership between three schools in East Harlem—Park East High School, Central Park East High School (CPEHS), and The Heritage School, which has now expanded to a fourth school, The Young Women’s Leadership School (TYWLS) of East Harlem— that had only pooled athletic resources in the past to leverage the strength of each school and share their best practices to benefit students.

Each school has a particular strength: Park East has a successful math program, CPEHS and TYWLS have outstanding college guidance programs, and Heritage has an art focus. We support each school in meeting its own identified needs while also investing in shared professional development and teaching techniques so that the strengths of each school can be leveraged by the others.

We have continued to support and expand this model. The results have been dramatic with each school’s students benefiting substantially from the shared practices. Some year-over-year outcome highlights from the past few years of teacher collaborations include: CPEHS’s Algebra 2 pass rates increasing from 69% to 82%; Park East’s ELA Regents pass rates increased from 91% to 94% and the college-ready rate increased from 75% to 86%; and Heritage’s ELA Regents pass rates increased from 53% to 67%. Another result of this partnership and the support to individual schools, is that Park East increased the number of students enrolling in a four-year college from 48% to 68% and Heritage increased its college acceptance rate from 35% to 100%.

CPEHS has also continued to achieve exceptional FAFSA completion rates year over year which led to our support of the creation of a “how to” guide detailing how the school accomplished a near perfect FAFSA completion rate.

With support from the Heckscher Foundation we’ve been able to achieve next level outcomes - 100% graduation rate, 94% college enrollment and soaring curriculum co-planned with teachers across 4 schools and access to top quality professional development. As a new principal, the support I get from my Heckscher colleagues has been invaluable to me in these extremely challenging times.
Dr. Suzy Ort
Principal, Park East High School