From The

Harlem high school celebrates a decade of 100 percent college acceptance

The flagship East Harlem school was opened in 1996 and follows an all-girls public education model. According to officials associated with the school, the concept of this single-sex focused school for young women was met with criticism in the beginning on why it was going to focus on just one sex, and whether or not it could be successful. However, the proof is in the numbers.

Since their first graduating class in 2000, the East Harlem school has had a 100 percent graduation rate in each successive class. Furthermore, it has been rated as being in the top 4 percent of high schools in New York City. Beyond the numbers there are four priority areas the school hones in on that may produce the aforementioned results: Math, Science and technology; Leadership, Health and Wellness and College preparation.

This network also utilizes a program known as CollegeBound Initiative, which is a school-based college guidance program for coed and single-sex public schools. From the moment a young woman enters TYWLS, as it’s affectionately known amongst students and staff, college preparation is a major focus. According to college counselor Chris Farmer, “When they started TYWLS they created a mission statement and part of their mission is to prepare young women for college and everyone at the school, every single person genuinely believes in that. It’s at the core of the soul of the school so everything we do is preparing young women for college.”

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