IMG_3546.JPG
black-student-hand-raised-in-class.jpg
IMG_3313 copy.jpg
IMG_3546.JPG

Cornerstone Academy for Social ActioN MIDDLE SCHOOL


A public middle school in the Bronx focused
on passion, self-actualization & 21st century
learning...with the #1 improvement in test scores
of any school in NYC. 

SCROLL DOWN

Cornerstone Academy for Social ActioN MIDDLE SCHOOL


A public middle school in the Bronx focused
on passion, self-actualization & 21st century
learning...with the #1 improvement in test scores
of any school in NYC. 

What makes us C.A.S.A.? First and foremost, it’s love for the students. It starts and ends with love. We’re here because we want to help our students learn and grow respectfully into human beings who can do great things.
— Brother Smith, C.A.S.A. Technology Teacher

Common core +
21st century learning

A good school doesn't simply mean good test scores. A good school develops the characters and passions of students towards self-actualization. A good school has teachers, coaches and mentors that push students to be the best they can be. A good school isn't about standardized test scores, or standardization at all. It's about student voice and growth.  

At C.A.S.A, learning is designed to be organic and humane. Our teachers organically create curriculum in collaboration with their students, with each class rooted in student voice, choice and individual needs. Our curriculum meets common core standards but our content is focused on real-world scenarios that are connected to the passions of students. Our pedagogy focuses on improving the creative, critical, collaborative and higher-order thinking skills of students. Our goal is to graduate students that are prepared to not only thrive in high school, but to thrive in life.

This is not a school, it’s a movement. Our students learn the history of hip hop. They make music videos about poverty. They express themselves through art. They read books about black and brown leaders not usually mentioned in history books. We want C.A.S.A. to be the kind of school that helps students discover who they are and who they want to become.
— Kevin Allen, Guidance Counselor

Genius hour

Borrowing from the 20% time concept of Google, we give students two 60-minute blocks per week to work on passion projects. Using design thinking, students explore issues within their community and create meaningful solutions.

Genius Hour uses resources like the Design for Change toolkit. 
 

Leadership training

Inspired by "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teenagers," we give students one 60-minute block per week to learn and practice leadership skills like communication and reflection. Students also have a chance to discuss life and societal issues.

Watch a song that C.A.S.A students created about "The 7 Habits" here. 

 

Community Circle

Every Friday begins with a 50-minute assembly for students and teachers to come together as a family. At Community Circle students can give shout-outs, make public apologies, and express themselves. Students have shared personal essays, danced, sang, performed spoken word poetry and more.

Watch videos from Community Circle here.

At C.A.S.A we don’t dwell in victimhood or struggle without talking about victory in the same sentence.
— Teacher, C.A.S.A.
black-student-hand-raised-in-class.jpg

#1 Improvement in Test Scores in NYC


We believe standardized tests are destroying our schools and stripping students of their gifts and ambitions. We refuse to teach to the test. Standardization is for inanimate objects, not for people with hearts and minds.

We focus on the individual needs of students - helping them learn and grow as human beings; the tests are an after-thought. Despite this - or more likely because of it, we ranked #1 in test score growth in 2015 in combined math and English Language Arts. Today C.A.S.A. ranks in the top [83rd] percentile of all schools in New York. 

We are proud that our students work hard and grow an average of two grade levels per year. Every student is a born genius - you just have to help them believe it. 

Learn more about our pedagogy here.

SCROLL DOWN

#1 Improvement in Test Scores in NYC


We believe standardized tests are destroying our schools and stripping students of their gifts and ambitions. We refuse to teach to the test. Standardization is for inanimate objects, not for people with hearts and minds.

We focus on the individual needs of students - helping them learn and grow as human beings; the tests are an after-thought. Despite this - or more likely because of it, we ranked #1 in test score growth in 2015 in combined math and English Language Arts. Today C.A.S.A. ranks in the top [83rd] percentile of all schools in New York. 

We are proud that our students work hard and grow an average of two grade levels per year. Every student is a born genius - you just have to help them believe it. 

Learn more about our pedagogy here.

C.A.S.A. is the best thing to happen to our daughter. It’s a genuine place all about teaching and growth. And I know this sounds corny – but the people here love what they do. And they let the kids be kids.
— Maria Johnson, Parent
IMG_3313 copy.jpg

A Culture of Love


Our student and staff culture
is rooted in love, support, being
responsible, and improving what
we do each and every day.

SCROLL DOWN

A Culture of Love


Our student and staff culture
is rooted in love, support, being
responsible, and improving what
we do each and every day.

This school is unlike any other. If you visit, the first thing you notice is joy. Joy in the faces of students.
— Michael Elliot, Film-Maker

Students

98% of our students are black and Latino. 90% are behind in school when they enter 6th grade but they rank in the [X]th percentile by the time they graduate. In the 2014-15 school year, only 2.3% of our students received a suspension.

 

teachers

Diversity is our biggest priority when hiring teachers. We look for diversity in culture, race, age, agenda, ideas, and experiences. On average, our teachers help their students to improve two grades per year. Our teacher turnover rate is just 1.5% per year.

 

Principal 

Jamaal Bowman is the founding principal of C.A.S.A. and has worked for 15 years as an educator in title-one schools. To understand his vision for education, visit his bio or blog.

We refuse to adopt the militarized, no-excuse discipline style made popular by certain charter schools. We let our kids be kids. But our suspension rate is just 2.3%. How is that possible? Three reasons: 45% of our teachers are male, we treat our students with respect, and we’ve created a learning environment that students want to be a part of.
— Jamaal Bowman, Pricipal