One of the city’s top-performing middle and high schools will soon get a new 681-seat school building.
Mayor Bill de Blasio today announced the groundbreaking for the Medgar Evers College Preparatory School (MECP) in partnership with the Department of Education (DOE), the School Construction Authority (SCA), and CUNY.
MECP, which serves a largely African-American student body from Central Brooklyn and southeast Queens. is a specialized 6-12th grade public school that requires an admissions process. It offers a super-fast-paced curriculum, a wide array of Advanced Placement classes, and an unusually large program devoted to the study of Mandarin, according to Inside Schools.
A source of pride in the African-American community since its inception 19 years ago, MECP sends its graduates both to the Ivy League and to historically black colleges such as Howard University and Spelman College.
MECPS students have excelled academically with 84% of their middle-grade students meeting state proficiency in English Language Arts (ELA) and 78% in math, far surpassing the majority of NYC schools where less than 38% of students meet state proficiency in ELA and math.
“When we talk about rebuilding a fairer and more equitable city, education is at the forefront of that vision,” said de Blasio. “Thanks to this groundbreaking effort, our students will have the resources they need to grow and proposer as future leaders of our city.”
The building will replace eight Transportable Classroom Units (TCUs) provided by CUNY that will be demolished prior to construction. The new facility will also include a competition-sized gymnasium with locker rooms for high school use, science labs, and 50,000 square feet of space to be used by CUNY.
Design for the 5-story building will start next spring with construction set to begin in 2022. The school building for the Medgar Evers College Preparatory School will be located adjacent to the school’s current site at 1186 Carroll Street with expected occupancy for the start of the 2025 school year.
The new building will be a fully air-conditioned, accessible facility for students, and will have 22 classrooms, four science labs and programmed space for CUNY. Additional amenities include a resource room, supervisory office, staff lunch/conference room and space for bicycle storage.
“If we truly believe that Black Lives Matter, we must invest in our communities in a way that will not only provide much-needed resources for the current generation, but will create a stable foundation upon which generations to come are able to thrive in an academic environment properly suited for their needs,” said City Council Majority Leader Laurie Cumbo. “Today, we are holding true to our beliefs, and I am overjoyed to see my vision for our Medgar Evers students come to fruition. This historical $110 million dollar investment is indicative of the city’s commitment to carrying forth the core sentiments behind the Black Lives Matter movement. I extend my deep appreciation to Mayor de Blasio and my fellow elected officials for working with me to substantively uplift our youth.”
“This project has been a long time in the making. I am excited for the Medgar Evers College Prep family and the community-at-large that we will soon have the much-needed modern facility that has been so desperately needed,” said Assembly Member Diana C. Richardson. “When we talk about equity in education, we have to also consider that structurally sound and well-maintained facilities help students and faculty feel supported and valued. Just imagine a space where both teachers and students are able to excel because they are in well-lit, clean, spacious, heated and air-conditioned classrooms.”
“Every child in our community deserves a first-rate education in spaces that are built to foster their success,” said U.S. Rep. Hakeem Jeffries. “I am pleased to join everyone here today to announce the beginning of work on a new school building for the Medgar Evers College Preparatory School. I thank Mayor de Blasio, Council Majority Leader Laurie Cumbo, the NYC Department of Education, CUNY and all the partnering organizations who made this achievement possible.”