MOTT HAVEN — A South Bronx high school struggling with extremely low graduation rates and student enrollment would be closed at the end of the school year under a new city proposal.
The Foreign Language Academy of Global Studies, located at 470 Jackson Ave. in Mott Haven, currently employs 16 full-time teachers and enrolls 101 students in grades 9-12, making it the high school with the fourth-lowest enrollment in New York City. according to the Ministry of Education.
The school, which opened in 1996 and focuses on foreign languages and global cultures, has seen a 55% drop in enrollment since the 2012-2013 school year, and only 2% of its students are ready for the university, according to the DOE.
FLAGS is also unable to provide its students with basic courses in Mathematics, English, Science and Social Studies without additional funding and can only offer them limited academic enrichment programs, resulting in a decline steady in the number of scholars and a declining graduation rate of more than 20 percentage points below the city average, the DOE said.
Additionally, only nine students listed FLAGS as their first choice in the first round of high school admissions for the 2016-17 school year, according to the DOE.
The eventual closure is still subject to the approval of the Education Policy Expert Group, which will consider the matter at its April meeting. If approved, FLAGS will shut down completely at the end of the current school year because its enrollment is too low for a phased shutdown, the DOE said.
Letters about the shutdown are being sent to families on Thursday, and they should also have already received a call about it, according to the DOE. The department also plans to hold a town hall meeting for the school community.
All FLAGS students will receive one-on-one support from the DOE to help them find a suitable new school for next year, and they will have access to available places across the city, according to the agency.
The DOE’s human resources department plans to work with the school’s principal and teachers to find them new jobs, and officials expect to find places for most of the teachers.
The director of FLAGS declined to comment on its possible closure.
“We must hold our schools accountable for improving student outcomes,” DOE Chancellor Carmen Fariña said in a statement. “When enrollment at a school is consistently low – and continues to decline – it simply cannot provide the services students need to thrive.”