Principal Mary Aronson and her staff at Northeast College Prep developed new curriculum over the summer with the goal of improving achievement and graduation rates. "We've done a ton of work this summer," said Aronson. "Our leadership team has been working non-stop to put the pieces in place to make this a more comprehensive experience for our students."
The school day begins at 6:50 a.m. and ends at 6:30 p.m. Additional academic support, along with activities like dance and drama will be offered in the late afternoon hours. Cristian Vazquez is a sophomore at the school and looking forward to the changes. "A lot of people just do whatever, but it's not really that productive, school is going to be something productive," said Vazquez.
Teachers will also have office hours on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The primary academic focus is improving literacy for the school's 554 students in grades seven through 12. The school is also partnering with Wegmans to identify community volunteers to help students learn about potential careers. "We're looking for volunteers throughout the community to bring that passion to share with our young men and women and give them experiences that they might not normally have," said Wegmans Director of Youth Development Ty Kelly.
Aronson believes District officials will have a good indication of how much the longer days are helping students by January. If the program works well, the model may be replicated at other school in Rochester.
For more information on volunteer opportunities at Northeast College Prep, email Steve Soprano at email@example.com.