The Brooklyn International High School

Pamela Taranto
49 Flatbush Avenue Extension

The Brooklyn International High School is a small, progressive public high school for recent immigrants. Our school, which is a member of the Internationals Network for Public Schools, is based on an educational model that allows students to explore interdisciplinary academic content in a learner-centered environment. Our students learn collaboratively in heterogeneous small groups with students of other cultures and languages, which fosters the development of their content knowledge as well as their English language ability. Brooklyn International is also a founding member of the New York Performance Standards Consortium.

Our pedagogical approach is based on five major tenets:
• Heterogeneous and collaborative structures that build on the strengths of every individual member of the school community to optimize learning.
• Expansion of our school beyond the four walls of our school building motivates adolescents and enhances their capacity to successfully participate in modern society.
• Language skills are most effectively learned in context and emerge most naturally in purposeful, language-rich, experiential, interdisciplinary study.
• Linking autonomy and responsibility at every level within a learning community allows all members to contribute to their fullest potential.
• All learners, faculty and students, experience the same learning model which maximizes their ability to support each other.

Our school is a close-knit, supportive community for students who may feel displaced after moving from another country and are unfamiliar with American language and culture. Differences among students are cherished and nurtured as they are continually encouraged to celebrate their cultural and linguistic individuality.

All students at Brooklyn International complete a career internship in the eleventh grade. As a part of the internship experience, students explore their career interests, write resumes, and practice interviewing skills in the fall semester. During the spring they complete 150 hours of supervised internship and create a web page about their internship site and their experiences. These web sites are presented to outside visitors as well as to the students who will be doing internship the following year. Most students say that the internship experience is a defining moment in their high school career.

Graduation Requirements:
Brooklyn International is a founding member of the New York Performance Standards Consortium. As such, students take the English Language Arts Regents examination and they must meet the New York State course requirements for high school graduation. In lieu of additional Regents exams, students complete a graduation portfolio which includes performance-based assessment tasks: a literary essay, a social studies research paper, an extended science experiment, and a math project. Also included in the portfolio is an arts project (a digital media arts piece, fine arts, or theater arts), a native language project, certification of completion of the career internship, and a self-reflection piece. This portfolio is presented in the junior and senior years and the work for the portfolio is integrated into the junior and senior classes. Our students tell us that having to prepare and orally present and defend their portfolio before a panel of teachers, students and external evaluators is excellent preparation for college.

College Now:
Approximately 20% of our students participate in College Now classes at New York City College of Technology and City College of New York every semester.

Who We Serve:
The Brooklyn International High School serves 400 students from 48 countries who speak forty languages. At the time they are admitted, our students have been in the country for less than four years and have scored at the beginning or low-intermediate level on the New York State English as a Second Language Achievement Test (NYSESLAT.)

College Overview:
95 % of Brooklyn International students go on to college. Some of the colleges our students attend are:
Bard College
Bucknell College
College of Aeronautics
College of Mt. St. Vincent
Baruch College
Bronx Community College
Brooklyn College
Borough of Manhattan Community College
City College
College of Staten Island
Hunter College
John Jay College
Kingsborough Community College
La Guardia Community College
Lehman College
Medgar Evers College
New York City College of Technology
Queens College
York College
Fordham University
Hartwick College
Iona College
Long Island University
Manhattan College
Mercy College
New York University
NYU – Polytechnic University
Pace University
Pratt Institute
St. Johns University
Skidmore College
SUNY: Binghamton University
College at Old Westbury
College at Oneonta
College at Plattsburg
College at Purchase
College of Agriculture and Technology at Cobleskill
College of Technology at Alfred
College of Technology at Farmingdale
Dutchess Community College
Fashion Institute of Technology
Finger Lakes Community College
Fulton-Montgomery Community College
Genesee Community College
Herkimer Community College
Mohawk Valley Community College
Morrisville Community College
Stony Brook University
Sullivan County Community College
University at Albany
Syracuse University
Touro College
Trinity College
Vanderbilt University