Our School’s Design
Our School’s Model
We believe that all can excel at high levels – achieving proficiency on state assessments, scoring competitively on college entrance exams, and earning acceptance to four-year colleges and universities.
Our school model is driven by three core beliefs:
- Rigorous instruction prepares scholars to attend and graduate from college.
- Values-based character development supports scholars in school and in life.
- Ambitious goals drive college readiness and the pursuit of professional aspirations.
These beliefs directly inform our vision and all elements of our school design.
In order for our scholars to access and graduate from the college or university of their choice, we must ensure that they acquire the necessary foundational knowledge and skills throughout middle school and high school that prepare them for the rigors of a college curriculum.
We believe that literacy is the backbone of success and that a scholar’s ability to excel in all other subjects hinges upon the ability to read on grade level. In all grades, scholars have time during the week devoted to independent reading and receive support from teachers and advisors in selecting books that challenge their reading levels.
At the middle school, we provide 100 instructional minutes daily in math and ELA to ensure students have high rates of proficiency in the foundational skills. Our instruction pushes critical thinking and conceptual understanding of the content. In 8th grade, scholars can begin taking High School Regents courses. At the high school, scholars can begin taking Advanced Placement courses in 10th grade, and at some point will have access to 10 different options for Advanced Placement courses.
Values Based Character Development
To prepare scholars for the challenges, opportunities, and responsibilities of school and life, we ensure that scholars build successful habits and cultivate a set of values that affirm their own self-worth. Beginning in sixth grade, scholars learn, practice, celebrate, and come to embody their Legacy “PRIDE” – Professionalism, Respect, Integrity, Determination, and Engagement. These values are infused into daily lessons, weekly advisory time, and communication between staff, scholars, and families. Additionally, we teach all scholars study skills, organizational strategies, and time management tools to ensure that eighth grade scholars are high school-ready and high school seniors are college-ready.
Pursuit of Ambitious Goals
In all grades, we teach and support scholars with setting ambitious academic, behavioral, organizational, and cultural goals. These goals are driven by the most ambitious goal of all – college graduation and life success. Legacy College Prep scholars know that college graduation is the goal from the first day of school. All decisions – instructional and operational – are driven by the mission to prepare all students to attend and graduate from college. Our walls are lined with the banners and flags of colleges and universities from across the country. Each advisory homeroom is named after a four-year university.
We frequently communicate with scholars and their families about is required for them to be prepared for high school, and then college. We take scholars and their families on college visits to show them what college will look like. In high school, scholars take a college seminar course every year to teach them the habits of a successful college student. The Senior Seminar course is designed to help scholars determine which schools are a best fit for them and then navigate the college application process. Finally, to support our alumni in the years after high school, our Alumni Coordinator will provide resources to ensure that scholars are successful after they graduate from Legacy.
Our School’s Approach
Driven by our mission, and informed by the three core beliefs of our model, the Legacy College Prep APPROACH is built on seven key design elements.
- Culture of PRIDE – Professionalism, Respect, Integrity, Determination, Engagement
- Highly Effective, Mission-driven Teachers
- Frequent, Purposeful Data Analysis
- Pro-active Partnership with Families
- Enrichment through Mission-aligned Activities, Trips, and Clubs
- Advisory Structure
- Community Service
1. Culture of PRIDE
The PRIDE core values represent the guidelines for how we achieve our mission. Our PRIDE core values of Professionalism, Respect, Integrity, Determination, and Engagement allow us to positively build a structured culture where we teach scholars the importance of working hard, making others better, and doing the right thing. Our core values system includes merits for demonstrating excellent behavior and exemplifying our PRIDE values, and demerits for not following the code of conduct. Scholars who exhibit the PRIDE values are celebrated in advisory and grade-level Town Halls.
2. Highly Effective, Mission-Driven Teachers
Research explicitly points to teacher quality as the single most important indicator, within a school, for a student’s academic success. We believe that excellent instruction is key to achieving strong academic results. We recruit high quality, mission-driven teachers and put a strong emphasis on developing those teachers every day. Each teacher is observed once per week and provided feedback in the form of live coaching, written feedback, and in-person meetings with their instructional coach. Daily, teachers have access to a hands-on leadership team that brings the experience and insights to help teachers grow in their craft. We recruit the right people for our team, and then maintain a priority on the quick and targeted growth of all teachers to ensure impactful instructional practice in every classroom.
3. Frequent and Purposeful Data Analysis
Assessment data directly informs the instruction in our classrooms and the differentiated academic supports we offer. Our teachers give daily exit ticket assessments on the standards taught during that class period. These data points are used to determine whether a class and individual scholars within it have mastered the objective from that day. At the end of each unit, teachers give scholars an assessment to measure mastery of the standards. In addition to unit assessments, students take an interim assessment every trimester/quarter to assess growth and mastery. An entire professional development day is then dedicated to analyzing data from these assessments, strategizing how to improve mastery, and creating adjustments to their plans.
4. Proactive Partnership with Families
In order to provide the best education for our scholars we form partnerships with our families. The key to our partnerships is frequent communication with families and opportunities for them to interact with the school in meaningful ways. At the beginning of the year, we invite families to attend a parent orientation during which we clearly present the school’s mission, outline expectations, routines, and systems, and answer questions that families might have. Throughout the school year, we hold monthly parent seminars and/or parent universities on various topics such as: Bullying, Social-Emotional Support, Gratitude, Organizational Support, and How to Read Your Scholar‘s Data. At the High School level we also hold monthly College Seminars to help partner with families on the college application and preparation process.
In addition to these scheduled events, we send home weekly student progress reports, monthly newsletters with updates on events and activities, and hold weekly office hours with the Principal for families to ask questions. We recognize the role of the family in our scholar’s next steps.
5. Enrichments, Athletics, and Field Trips
Scholars participate in enrichment clubs, join sports teams, attend multiple field trips, and go on college visits to ensure that they have a variety of educational experiences throughout their middle and high school years.
Every afternoon for 60 minutes, students have the opportunity to join a sport or an enrichment club of their choice.
At our schools we offer the following enrichments:
- Step Club
- Dissection Club
- Beauty Academy
- Slime Club
- Anime Club
- Student Council
- National Honor Society
- National Junior Society
- Art Club
- Drum Corps
- Martial Arts
- Chess Club
- Cooking Club
At our schools we offer the following sports:
- Flag Football
- Track and Field
Scholars have an opportunity to earn Merit Celebrations each month. Here are some of the Merit Celebration Trips from prior years:
- Broadway Shows
- One World Trade
- Dave and Busters
- Movie Theater
- Bronx Zoo
- Escape Room
- Knicks Games
Finally, our middle and high school provide access to college trips every year. The Middle School offers one local trip in the fall and an overnight trip in the spring. The High School offers all scholars two local trips, one in the spring and one in the fall, and one overnight trip at the end of the year. The High School offers juniors and seniors access to over 25 different college trips to help them be better positioned to strategically select which colleges they are interested in.
6. Advisory Structure
We provide scholars with a mentorship program through our advisory structure. Every scholar is assigned to an advisory before the start of the school year. Advisories are named after various college and universities. Scholars spend 30-40 minutes per day with their advisory, allowing them to form relationships with the advisor and other students in their advisory. The advisors provide support services to students to ensure they are successful, including help with organization, frequent communication with families, one-on-one mentoring, and implementation of goal tracking systems for progress on anything scholars might be struggling.
7. Community Service
Service to the community is one of the greatest ways for our students to realize their social responsibility to the world. We organize frequent community service projects for students to participate in. At the high school level scholars have a graduation requirement of 45 hours of community service. The emphasis and importance of this requirement instills in students the value of service and help students form a habit of giving back to the community in a meaningful way.
Our Core Values: PRIDE
Legacy College Preparatory Charter School is driven by five core values that help us ensure all students are prepared for success in college and beyond. PRIDE outlines these values, but the acronym itself also represents the pride our school community will have in Legacy College Preparatory Charter School and the way we will all show that pride.
P – Professionalism
R – Respect
I – Integrity
D – Determination
E – Engagement
At Legacy College Prep, we prepare every student for a college degree from the moment they enter our school. To accomplish our mission, we provide the following:
- Rigorous middle school curriculum and instruction, with an intense focus on foundational literacy and math.
- Rigorous high school curriculum and instruction, with an intense focus on college preparation.
- Highly effective teachers in every classroom, with an emphasis on frequent teacher feedback and continuous teacher development.
- Character development implemented through our values-based daily advisory structure and weekly community circles.
- School culture rooted in the belief that hard work and attention to the details produces strong results for all students.
- Explicit and consistently enforced high expectations and code of conduct allow students to be physically, emotionally, and intellectually safe.
- Ongoing, proactive partnerships with families support our ambitious, college preparatory mission for all students.