Our Results

  • 98% of our 2018 graduates were accepted to college.
  • 89% of our high school students graduate within 4 years.
  • 67% of our students are eligible for free/reduced lunch.

Our network schools primarily serve students from under-resourced communities who have historically lacked access to a high-quality education. 

  • 22% of students are classified as having special education needs
  • 6% of students are English Language Learners
  • 67% of our students qualify for free/reduced lunch. 

Student Snapshot

  • 40% Hispanic
  • 28% black
  • 22% white
  • 7% Asian/Pacific Islander
  • 3% are of mixed race or other backgrounds

Our 4-year graduation rate exceeded the citywide rate and we are helping to close the opportunity gap. 

  • Our 4-year graduation rate of 89% far exceeded the City’s rate of 74%.
  • Our graduation rate for black students is 88%, 20 percentage points higher than citywide rates for black students.
  • Our graduation rate for Hispanic students is 83%, 16 percentage points higher than the citywide rate for Hispanic students. 
  • Both rates surpassed the citywide graduation rate for white students of 82%. 

Our college acceptance rate is almost 100%.

  • 98% of our 2018 graduates were accepted to college.

Our college enrollment and persistence rates are extremely promising. 

  • 83% of our 2017 graduates enrolled in college within 6-months of their high school graduation, compared to a citywide rate of 77%.
  • 83% of our 2016 graduates who enrolled in college persisted to their sophomore year.

Our network schools consistently excel on NYC Department of Education accountability measures.

  • In 98% of cases across categories of the School Quality Guide system, our schools were identified as good or excellent, compared to a citywide rate of 74%. 
  • 96% of the time our schools received one of the two highest Quality Review scores, compared to 88% of schools citywide.

Schools in our network are recognized nationally and locally for their exemplary practices.

  • MELS continues to serve as one of 46 NYC Department of Education’s Showcase Schools, regularly hosting visits from schools across the City to share their strong instructional practices and the leadership structures they have put in place to support these practices. In this role, MELS has produced a collection of open source resources for schools focused on the use of collaborative structures (among both adults and students) to create a school culture that supports high achievement for all.
  • Three of our schools—Brooklyn Collaborative, Channel View, and Leaders—received 2018 bronze medal designations from U.S. News and World Report, ranking them among the top third of high schools in New York State based on how well the schools are preparing students for college.
  • Brady Smith, our James Baldwin principal, was featured in Education Leadership magazine’s article “Fighting the Normalization of Failure” for the school culture of high expectations and support he has established that is helping the students at his transfer school succeed. Transfer schools are designed to re-engage students who have dropped out of high school or who have fallen behind in credits.
  • Channel View was one of ten schools citywide to receive a grant from the Grammy Museum in recognition of its music program. The grant included an opportunity for some of their students to participate in a mentoring session from professional New York City-based musicians.
  • MAELS, Brooklyn Collaborative, and Leaders are three of 42 public middle and high schools across New York City working together as part of the Mastery Collaborative to shift the paradigm of grading and learning in NYC schools towards a mastery-based learning environment wherein students progress by demonstrating independent mastery of learning goals, or outcomes.
  • The American Academy of Arts and Letters awarded its 2017 Presidential Citation to Graham Johnson, a music teacher at WHEELS. The citation acknowledges one teacher a year for his/her achievement in the nurturing of the arts at a New York City public school.
  • Leaders hosted teachers from throughout the city in a one-day Science Practitioner Experience Lab to share practices that help students prepare for college-level work by supporting students to independently design and execute unique experiments and orally defend a science thesis.
  • MELS, MAELS, and Leaders are three of only 33 schools nationwide to achieve EL Education’s national credential for their exemplary practice in each of the three dimensions of student achievement that the EL model prioritizes: academic performance, high-quality work, and positive character. And MELS is one of only 14 of the credentialed schools to serve as an EL Education Mentor School. 

"This Educational Leadership Award... really goes to NYC Outward Bound, which does truly extraordinary work in the field of education."
-Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

“NYC Outward Bound is…defying the lie, defying the myth, defying the stereotypes about what children can and cannot do.”
—Arne Duncan, former U.S. Secretary of Education

"Last week I visited [NYC Outward Bound's] Leaders School in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, which is a glowing example of community cohesion... Students are given tremendous responsibility, and are put in challenging social circumstances that call forth compassion, judgment, sensitivity and mercy... Most of all I was struck by their kindness toward one another. No student could remember any racial or ethnic conflict. Many upperclassmen serve as peer mentors to the underclassmen. There’s a palpable sense of being cared for. That’s in part because the school has a wide definition of student achievement."
-David Brooks, Columnist, NYTimes

"What NYC Outward Bound does is create a sense of self-possession and a sense of ownership over what one does and over one's path - which is the key to so much of what works in education and, I dare say, to what works in life." 
-NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio

“NYC Outward Bound, we think the world of you. We think you are outstanding: all the energy, all the work and the vision that you have -- but more importantly, your partnership with the Department of Education will allow our students to grow and prosper and be successful adults."
-former NYC Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott

“This kind of innovative school…is an example of how all our schools should be.”
President Obama after visiting an Expeditionary Learning school in Washington D.C.

“Outward Bound’s involvement with the creation of new schools has had a direct impact of the success of our students. I appreciate your support as we build on our vision for public education: that all students will be given the tools they need to succeed in and out of the classroom.”
—Joel Klein, former Chancellor, NYC Department of Education

"In the years that I’ve been teaching, [EL Education is] the single best model of learning for kids and the most satisfying model for teachers, because the kids are working on real projects, their work holds great value, and you are stretching them academically."
—Jennifer Wood, teacher

“When you walk through the NYC Outward Bound schools, you really do get the sense that these kids are working with very high expectations, that they really are being pushed and prepared for college in all the ways possible.”
—Adam Tucker, Senior Program Officer, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Recent News

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    MAELS Chorus Wins Big July 8, 2018

    The MAELS choir walked away from PA's Music in the Parks choral competition with a first-place trophy as well as the festival's "Esprit de Corps" award.

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    Launch Students protest gun violence in school walkout June 8, 2018

    Clad in orange T-shirts, wielding anti-gun-violence signs and yelling “We Matter” down sidewalks in Brooklyn, hundreds of seventh- and eighth-graders from Launch held their second annual school walkout in protest of gun violence in their community.

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    Creating Work that Matters: Transforming the Classroom through Student Action June 8, 2018

    In this EdWeek post, WHEELS teacher Anthony Voulgarides and two of his twelfth-grade English Language Arts students, Ahlenne and Hamlet, talk about creating work that matters, in and out of the classroom.

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Third Party Research

2013 Mathematica Policy Research study of three of our network middle schools and two EL Education schools in Washington DC, found that the schools significantly boost students' reading and math--students gained 7 months of additional learning growth in reading and roughly 10 months in math accumulated over three years.

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