• 2015-2016 Blackboard Award Honoree: Bronx Charter School for Excellence

    Bronx Charter School for Excellence, Principals: Aleisha Rodriguez (Elementary School) & Desiree Hunter (Middle School)

    By New York Family

    Editor’s note: To read profiles of all 2015-2016 Blackboard Awards honorees, click HERE!

    Bronx Charter School for Excellence
    Principals: Aleisha Rodriguez (Elementary School) & Desiree Hunter (Middle School)
    Elementary School: 1960 Benedict Avenue, Bronx
    Middle School: 1804 Holland Avenue, Bronx
    Award: Outstanding School

    Describe your school’s core educational philosophy.

    Bronx Excellence’s core educational philosophy and academic niche can be summarized in six statements: Every child has the ability to succeed; every child should have access to free, high-quality educational options; education is about creating scholars for life; great education is about the quality of learning; success is a moving target focused on continual improvement; and all stakeholders must collaborate and do whatever it takes to support students on their pathway to success. We aim to elevate every child and family in the community by providing a positive, supporting, and challenging learning environment where every child will succeed. The core design elements of our academic program include high academic standards, extended school days, a broad liberal arts education that stresses teaching critical thinking skills, data-driven instruction, rigorous parent engagement, and open collaboration with the community.


    Aleisha Rodriguez & Desiree Hunter. Photo by Marcus Photography.

    Tell us about a few of the school’s achievements or distinguishing programs.

    In 2012, the US Department of Education recognized Bronx Excellence as a National Blue Ribbon School. To receive this award is a great honor, especially because just five years prior to the award Bronx Excellence was struggling to meet state standards and was performing below the level of the local district. This turnaround in performance is something that we are especially proud of.

    What’s new?

    Within the last year, we have replicated the Bronx Excellence school model in Stamford, Connecticut (Stamford Excellence), and were approved by SUNY to open another school in the Bronx (Bronx Excellence 2). Stamford Excellence, the first elementary charter school in the Stamford region, opened for grades pre-K through 1 in September 2015. Bronx Excellence 2, opening in September 2016, will serve grades K-1 and will continue to reduce the waiting list for Bronx Excellence 1.

    What do you love about your school?

    We love that every stakeholder—students, parents, teachers, leaders, board members, and community members—works together to achieve academic excellence.

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