The East Harlem Tutorial Program (EHTP) prepares youth in need for success in college. EHTP coordinates four initiatives to reach its goal of increasing college graduation rates for youth from East Harlem. The initiatives include a no-cost after-school and summer tutoring program for public school students, a teaching residency that builds a pipeline of educators to serve the East Harlem community, a college scholars program to support college enrollment, graduation, and career preparation, and a network of public charter schools.
In August 2018, EHTP opened a new middle school, Scholars Academy II Middle School, as part of its public charter school program. Read on to learn more about the new school.
The school is guided by core values that are emphasized during classes, after-school programs, and special events. The core values include: service, courage, humility, originality, leadership, achievement, and reflection. Service is achieved by helping others and appreciating both local and world communities. Courage is demonstrated by challenging yourself to take risks, persevering through difficulties, and questioning the status quo. Humility is shown by apologizing and seeking to surmount shortcomings. Originality is embraced by recognizing your unique qualities and celebrating diversity. Leadership is shown by demonstrating moral character and treating others as you would like to be treated. Achievement is reached through the pursuit of knowledge and excellence. Reflection is encouraged by considering past actions and planning for the future.
The school operates according to a set of guiding principles that form the foundation of its high-performing, student-centered learning environment. The five guiding principles include: all children who have access to a great education can and will succeed, optimal learning results from higher-order critical thinking, nurturing and support encourages a love of learning and of one’s self, self-awareness leads to global understanding and leadership, and community engagement boosts educational opportunities.
The school abides by its Racial Equality Statement, which articulates its commitment to a society free from oppression and bigotry. The statement recognizes the historical marginalization of minority groups and the ongoing inequalities that members of these groups face. The statement also acknowledges the pervasive racism that underlies the experiences of members of the school community, and it makes a commitment to acknowledge both the conscious and unconscious biases held by each member of the school community. Overall, the school strives to serve as an agent of change in the national fight for racial equality.
The school follows a carefully designed curriculum that aligns with Common-Core Learning Standards. Classes encourage student engagement, and school-wide programs emphasize both student autonomy and connectedness. The varied elective academic offerings include foreign languages and the arts. In addition, advisory periods focus on mentoring and character development. Other elements of the school program include frequent short- and long-term goal setting exercises, as well as social contracts and behavioral guidelines designed to maintain a healthy environment. Students and teachers jointly focus on modeling and practicing classroom and school-wide protocols and routines.
The school’s curriculum includes English language arts (ELA), social studies, Spanish, music, art, physical education, mathematics, science, and technological literacy. In ELA, students learn to read, comprehend, discuss, analyze, and write about complex texts, and to use literacy skills in other content areas. In the social studies curriculum, students develop an understanding of the role of research and critical thinking as they learn about geography, social and cultural issues, historical eras, and economic concepts. The Spanish curriculum concentrates on helping students to attain a high level of fluency by the eighth grade, with a requirement to pass a high school Regents exam. The music curriculum teaches rhythm, voice, movement, and performance. In the art curriculum, students learn self-expression through drawing, painting, and sculpture. The physical education curriculum includes opportunities to participate in competitive team and individual sports, including dance.
In the areas of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), the school provides a broad array of offerings. In the mathematics curriculum, the focus is on problem-solving, understanding concepts, and computational fluency, which are achieved through daily routines that prepare students for Algebra I by the eighth grade and provide a foundation for future STEM careers. The science curriculum is based on inquiry and covers physical science, living environments, and earth science, with lab/maker space available for hands-on research and problem-based learning. In the technological literacy curriculum, students learn how to use databases, computing technologies, modeling software, word processing programs, and communication presentation programs.
The school day runs from 7:45 a.m. to 4 p.m. from Mondays through Thursdays and 7:45 a.m.to 1 p.m. on Fridays. Friday afternoons are reserved for teacher and staff professional development. The school currently enrolls children in grades 5 and 6, with grades 7 and 8 planned for enrollment in subsequent years.