Queens

Portfolio Planning

Business, Computer Applications & Entrepreneurship High School (Posted 1.8.2013)

Proposal Information

Fact Sheet: Proposed Phase-out and Replacement of Performance of Business, Computer Applications & Entrepreneurship High School (29Q496)

(to download a printable PDF of this website, please click here)
To read a transcript of this hearing, click here.

Overview

We want every community to have high quality school options for families. Every fall, the Department of Education (DOE) reviews the performance of all schools Citywide. Over the past several years, despite the best efforts of the community and the DOE to support Business, Computer Applications & Entrepreneurship High School (“BCAE”), the school has struggled to meet basic requirements for student success.

 

On December 4 and December 5, 2012, Queens High School Superintendent Juan Mendez held meetings at the school with the School Leadership Team, staff, and parents to discuss what is working at BCAE, what needs to be improved, and how the community can work together to better serve students.

 

Based on an extensive review of qualitative and quantitative data and community feedback, the DOE has determined that BCAE does not have the capacity to quickly improve and is proposing that the school be phased out. The DOE is also proposing that the school be replaced by a new school.

 

Proposing to phase out a school is the most difficult decision we make. We are proposing to phase out BCAE because it is the right action for current and future students in this community.  If the proposal to phase out BCAE is approved, the school would phase out gradually over the next several years. The school would close in June 2016 after its phase-out is complete.

 

We hope you share our view that we can—and must—do better for students. The DOE will continue to work closely with BCAE staff and families to ensure that all students receive the support they need to succeed.

 

 

Performance Summary

Graduation Rates

Progress Report Grades

Quality Review Rating

2011-2012 (4 year rate)

2011-2012 (6 year rate)

2009-2010

2010-2011

2011-2012

2011-2012

47%

68%

D

C

D

Developing

 

  • Graduation rates have remained between 47% and 57% for the last four years. BCAE’s four-year graduation rate (including August graduates) was 47% in 2012—well below the most recent Citywide average of 65.5% (Citywide average is based on the 2011 New York State reported graduation results for NYCDOE students.)
  • First year credit accumulation is a key predictor of student success because students who fall behind early in high school often have trouble getting back on track to graduate. In 2011-2012, only 63% of first-year students at BCAE earned at least 10 credits with at least 6 of those credits earned across 3 of the 4 core subject areas. This rate of credit accumulation puts BCAE in the lowest 11% of schools Citywide.
  • BCAE was identified by the New York State Education Department (NYSED) as a Focus School, defined by NYSED as among the lowest-performing schools in the state based on its results with certain high-needs student groups.
  • The Progress Report measures the progress and performance of students in a school, as well as the school environment, compared to other schools serving similar student populations. BCAE earned a D grade on its 2011-2012 annual Progress Report, including an F grade for Student Progress and a D grade for Student Performance. The school did receive B grades for School Environment and College and Career Readiness. BCAE has a history of low performance, including an overall D grade on the 2009-2010 Progress Report and an overall C grade on the 2010-2011 Progress Report.
  • On the 2012 New York City School Survey, only 74% of parent respondents reported that their child was safe at BCAE, putting the school in the lowest 4% of high schools Citywide.
  • Demand for BCAE is low. BCAE has one educational option program to which students apply as part of the High School Admissions Process. BCAE received only 1.6 applications per seat, well below the citywide average of 8.9.

 

Despite Our Best Efforts, Performance Remains Low

 

We recognize that BCAE staff members have worked hard to improve the school, but even with support the school has not produced adequate outcomes for students. To help the school’s efforts to improve performance, the DOE offered numerous supports to BCAE including:

 

Leadership Support:

  • Coaching the principal in the use of classroom observations and feedback to enhance teacher effectiveness.
  • Working with the principal to assess areas in need of improvement in the school and supporting the implementation of a strategic action plan to address these concerns.
  • Assisting school leadership in the development of instructional plans and goals for the school year, in support of the school’s Comprehensive Education Plan.

 

Instructional Support:

  • Providing coaching and professional development for teachers on strategies to strengthen instruction and improve academic outcomes for special education students.
  • Participating in classroom walkthroughs to provide targeted feedback for teachers on ways to improve classroom instruction and increase student engagement.
  • Coaching teachers in the development of lesson plans, curriculum maps and rubrics aligned to citywide instructional expectations.
  • Facilitating the school’s participation in a program that provides on online resources and technology to help teachers differentiate instruction and improve literacy outcomes for students.

 

Operational Support:

  • Training school staff in student data tracking systems to ensure efficient and effective monitoring of student attendance, and providing guidance on strategies to increase student attendance.
  • Assisting the school in the development of a school safety plan and discipline code, and coaching school staff in best practices for reducing the number of safety incidents and suspensions.
  • Advising school staff on budgeting, staffing, teacher recruitment and building management.

 

Student Support:

  • Coaching the school in the use of evidence-based guidance and counseling strategies to build the school’s capacity to offer social and emotional support to students.
  • Providing professional development for school staff on topics in youth development, including crisis-management, bullying, and violence prevention, in order to foster awareness and improve the school’s culture and learning environment.

 

What would the proposal mean for current students?


If this proposal is approved by the Panel for Educational Policy (PEP), BCAE would gradually phase out over the next several years.  Our top priority is ensuring that current BCAE students are supported through graduation.  Below are enrollment plans for current BCAE students if the school were to be phased out.

 

·         Current, first-time ninth grade students would have the option of completing high school at BCAE if they continue to earn credits on schedule and pass the required Regents exams.  They may also apply to attend a different high school as a 10th grader in September 2013 by participating in the second round of the High School Admissions Process.

 

·         Current, repeating ninth grade students would complete high school at BCAE as long as they earn credits on schedule and pass the required Regents exams. As the school becomes smaller, these students would receive more individualized attention to support them toward graduation and to help them prepare for post-secondary education and/or career plans. Students would also be encouraged to meet with their guidance counselor to review progress toward graduation.

·         Current 10th, 11th, and 12th grade students who are on track to graduate would complete high school at BCAE if they continue to earn credits on schedule and pass the required Regents exams. As the school becomes smaller, these students would receive more individualized attention to support them toward graduation and to help them prepare for post-secondary education and/or career plans. Students would also be encouraged to meet with their guidance counselor to review progress toward graduation.

·         Current 10th, 11th, and 12th grade students who are not on track to graduate should meet with their guidance counselors to review their progress toward graduation and to discuss their options. Students could complete high school at BCAE or consider applying to a transfer high school. 

 

If the proposal to phase out BCAE is approved, the school would not admit new ninth-grade students after the end of this school year. BCAE would continue to serve students currently enrolled in the school.  The school would close in June 2016 after its phase-out is complete.

 

 

Supporting Current Students

 

The DOE remains focused on helping BCAE students succeed. If this proposal is approved, BCAE would be provided targeted, customized and intensive supports aimed at the unique needs of the school and its students. This support would be in the areas of budget, staffing, programming, community engagement, guidance and enrollment including, but not limited to: 

 

  • Helping the school provide students with options that support their advancement and fully prepare students for their next transition point,
  • Working with school staff to foster a positive culture, and
  • Supporting school leadership in efficiently and strategically allocating resources to ensure a consistent and coherent school environment focused on student outcomes.

Plans for New Schools for the BCAE Community

 

The DOE has proposed to open and co-locate a new district high school in the same building as BCAE. If that co-location proposal is approved, the new school will begin serving grade 9 and will add one more grade each year until it serves grades 9-12. 

 

More information about this replacement school will be available shortly. We will work with the community to retain partnerships with community-based organizations that are offering valuable services to the school community.

 

 

Next Steps and What You Can Expect

 

In the next two months, the DOE will invite the BCAE community to participate in a joint public hearing co-hosted by the DOE, the District 29 Community Education Council and BCAE’s School Leadership Team. As soon as the hearing has been scheduled, we will notify you of the date and also share with you the formal phase-out proposal. During the joint public hearing, community members, including parents and students, will be able to share their thoughts on the phase-out proposal.

 

The proposals to phase out and replace BCAE will be voted on by the Panel for Educational Policy (“PEP”), which is composed of members appointed by Mayor Bloomberg and the five Borough Presidents, during a public meeting scheduled for March 11, 2013. During this meeting, the public will have another opportunity to comment on the proposals. If the PEP approves the proposals, BCAE would not accept new students next school year. 

 

Sharing Your Concerns and Questions

The DOE is seeking your feedback on the proposals. We will record your comments and include them in our Analysis of Public Comments, which is presented to the PEP prior to the vote on the proposals. Please submit your comments to:

 

Phone: 212-374-7621

Email: D29Proposals@schools.nyc.gov

Online: http://schools.nyc.gov/community/planning/changes/queens/feedback?id=374

Opportunities for Feedback

  • Panel for Educational Policy Meeting

    Date: 3/11/2013
    Time: 6:00 PM
    Location: Brooklyn Technical High School located at 29 Fort Greene Place, Brooklyn, NY 11217
  • Joint Public Hearing

    Date: 2/26/2013
    Time: 6:00 PM
    Location: 207- 01 116th Avenue Queens, NY 11411