Our Results

  • 94% of our 2013 graduates were accepted to college.
  • 100% of our schools received top or 2nd highest rating on their Quality Review vs 58% citywide
  • Our 18-month college enrollment rate is higher than 98% of the City's public schools.

Our Population

  • Our schools primarily serve a high-needs population from neighborhoods where access to high-quality education has historically been lacking. 72% of our students qualify for free/reduced lunch. 20% are classified as having special education needs. Our students are predominantly Hispanic (43%) and African-American (30%).
  • Our students enter far behind grade level in key subject areas. Of 9th-graders entering our schools, 69% were below grade level in English Language Arts, and more than half were below grade level in Math. 

Our Results

  • Our college acceptance rates are outstanding. 94% of our 2013 graduates were accepted to college. Almost half of our high schools had 100% college acceptance rates.
  • Our 2013 graduates will be attending a range of colleges including Cornell, Bard, Skidmore, American University, Hamilton, University of Southern California, NYU, Wheaton, Ithaca and Wesleyan, as well as many CUNY and SUNY schools, among others. 
  • Our college enrollment is high. 90% of our 2013 graduates plan to attend college. Our 18-month college enrollment rate is higher than 98% of the City’s public schools.
  • Our high school graduation rates continue to be strong. Our 2012-13 graduation rate was 76%,  significantly higher than the citywide rate of 66%.
  • Our schools are increasingly proving to be “schools of choice.” Marsh Avenue received over 1,700 applications for 150 6th-grade seats and Metropolitan received more than 1,100 applications for 130 6th-grade seats and 1,100 applications for 35 9th-grade seats.
  • Our students exceed key benchmarks that assess preparedness for graduation. Credit accumulation is a key indicator of whether students are on-track to graduate. 85% of our students are considered on-track or almost on-track to graduate.
  • Our schools are places where the teaching and leadership are strong.  100% of our schools (vs 58% citywide) received the highest or second highest rating in the Department of Education's Quality Reviews, which assess teacher and principal practice.
  • Teacher retention at our schools is high. 89% of our teachers returned in 2012-2013 and 93% report that they intend to stay in their schools for the foreseeable future. On average, teaching experience has risen from 4.5 years to 6.7 years due to our high retention rates.
  • Our schools are succeeding in establishing strong cultures of achievement, engagement and respect. Five of our network schools scored above average in all four categories of the 2012 Department of Education NYC School Survey. 95% of responding students reported that adults in their school helped them understand what they need to do to succeed academically, and 92% of responding teachers considered their school to be an intimate and equitable learning community.
  • Our parents feel welcome and included. The Department of Education's 2012 NYC School Survey results show that 99% of reporting parents feel welcome in their child’s school and 96% felt that their school keeps them informed on their child’s progress.
  • Our professional development is highly rated by educators in our schools. Based on our PD & Partnership Survey results, 100% of Principals and Instructional Guides felt our professional development (PD) helped teachers increase the quality of their Expeditionary Learning practice. 100% of Instructional Guides agreed that our PD improved their coaching/mentoring skills. 99% of Crew Advisors agreed that our Crew Orientation courses helped develop positive school culture and student character.
  • Our students produce high-quality work and real-world products. Our students are required to examine real-world problems that need real-world solutions. They must think critically and creatively, synthesize complex information, and find solutions to 21st-century problems. These solutions are reflected in the real-world products they create - like water quality analyses presented to local community boards, playground design concepts presented to architectural firms with city contracts, and public transportation proposals for MTA and public officials.

"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, U.S. Secretary of Education

“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."
-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.

“There should be an Expeditionary Learning School in every neighborhood in this country, as it is the only design, that I am aware of, where experience is at the center and the things which we experience are those we best remember.”
—Tom Vander Ark, former Executive Director, Education, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

“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, [Expeditionary Learning 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

The American Youth Policy Forum gave Expeditionary Learning a 5-star rating for linking community service to academics and building "an ethos …of service to others."

image description

Support Our Mission

Raise the odds for NYC public school students by donating today.

Our College Application March

In 2012, we implemented a network-wide college application march to inspire determination, community and support in our students as they pursue their goal of a college education. This year, 94% of our students were accepted to college.

Stay Connected

Receive news on our schools, programs and upcoming events.