Why Rochester Prep?
We compiled a list of the top 10 reasons why families choose Rochester Prep for their child's education. Click below to jump to the section that matters most to you!
Results are at the top of our list because we are always at the top of results lists. Is your child’s school effective at teaching your child? There are many different philosophies about what makes a great school but all measures can be boiled down to that one question. Our results speak for themselves. Our schools are a place where students, most of whom are city residents, achieve similarly to wealthier suburban schools. Last year Rochester Prep’s 3rd grade math scores were the best in the entire Monroe County, beating even Pittsford School District! Consistently, year after year, our students are achieving at incredible levels.
For a more detailed look at Rochester Prep’s 2017 results, click here.
We believe our scholars develop strong character in a supportive environment. Consistent routines allow students to be confident in what to expect each day. Scholars wear uniforms and act with respect for others while at school and when traveling on the school bus. Teachers manage the classroom by using a positive behavior system to reward productive work habits and encourage good behavior. Clear, carefully planned procedures ensure that students feel safe and secure. All of these elements result in a calm school atmosphere that helps students to focus on learning.
We believe that learning should be fun. Affectionately known as the J-Factor at Uncommon Schools, joy is a core part of our philosophy and is built into everything we do. This could mean shooting some hoops with friends, learning how to play an instrument, or doing your best dinosaur impersonation. But the J-Factor is more than this. Even a simple English Language Arts lesson is brightened when a student makes an insightful comment in class and her classmates show her “props,” which are signature cheers to celebrate classmates’ successes. Outside of traditional class time, your child may learn to dance at Rochester Prep West Elementary School’s Hispanic Passport Event, participate in the secret Harry Potter night at West Middle School, or get hyped at the High School’s pep rally before a big football game. We make sure our students and families love being part of our community. The below collage shows just a glimpse into the joyous moments going on throughout the day at a Rochester Prep School.
You can’t have great schools without great teachers. Rochester Prep specifically recruits teachers who are passionate about the mission and a good fit for our schools. You’ll find that they are some of the hardest working teachers around. They constantly collect data about how each student is learning and then adapt instructional strategies to meet individual needs. Teachers will stop at nothing to ensure students’ success.
Rochester Prep teachers do what they do because they genuinely love and care about the kids in their classrooms. Nobody knows this better than our students. A parent recently shared with us that her kindergartener came home from school and told Mom, “I love (my teacher) Ms. Wright because your hugs feel the same. The hugs that I give Ms. Wright feel like the hugs I give you.” That sentiment encapsulates our teachers better than anything we could write.
In its 12th year in Rochester, Rochester Prep has proven that its curriculum and teaching methods consistently deliver exceptional results year after year. As part of the Uncommon Schools network, Rochester Prep takes a page from the education leaders that literally wrote the book on teaching. (No kidding; the authors of Teach Like A Champion, one of the most respected books on teaching, work at Uncommon Schools.) A recent study at Stanford showed that students at Uncommon Schools made the greatest academic gains of any charter network of our size in the country. So when you enroll your child at a Rochester Prep school, you can be sure that our educational model is tried and true.
The elementary and middle school curriculum focuses on establishing a strong foundation in reading and math and also includes science, history, art, music, and gym.
- Because one of the best predictors of long term academic success is whether a student can read at grade level by the end of third grade, there is a heavy emphasis on honing reading skills during a three hour literacy block at Rochester Prep elementary schools. If students don’t learn to read well in their first years of elementary school, they often struggle in later years since reading is a fundamental skill that is required for success in other subjects.
- We challenge all of our students to excel in math, too. In fact, 93% of all Rochester Prep students leave middle school having already passed the high school Algebra I Regents exam. This sets them up for Advanced Placement math and science courses in high school where students have the opportunity to earn college credits.
- We are proud of our emphasis on literacy and math skills, but we also prioritize a well-rounded curriculum so that your child can explore their curiosity in the science lab or express themselves through art, music, sports, etc. We know that being ready for college requires a balanced K-12 education.
Watch the video below to learn more about the Uncommon model, seen through the eyes of Uncommon Schools students across all of our regions, including Rochester Prep’s very own: India!
Rochester Prep believes that strong partnerships with families are essential for scholars’ success. We make a concerted effort to get to know families and ensure that they feel welcome in our schools. Families can expect constant communication from teachers and academic advisors about students’ progress, learning, and behavior. In addition to regular phone calls home, there is also an online portal where parents can check student’s grades at any time. We want your child to see that you and the school are unified in wanting them to be the best student they can be!
Please watch this 90-second video to hear directly from kindergarten parents about their experience with Rochester Prep.
At Rochester Prep, we think it is never too early to inspire our students to dream big. Every day, students are invited to feel the joy of learning, do the hard work necessary to meet high academic expectations, and take one more step toward a bright and exciting future.
From the very first day of Kindergarten, we help put your child on the path to college. All Rochester Prep homerooms are named after a university, college pennants adorn school hallways, and students take field trips to college campuses. From the elementary scholars who sing songs about attending universities when they grow up to the high school students who enroll in a robust slate of Advanced Placement courses, a “college bound” mindset is reinforced at all Rochester Prep schools.
Time flies, and before you know it students will be in high school. When they get there, Rochester Prep has a special department called “College Access and Success” to help upperclassmen navigate each step of the college application process and to serve as a support for Rochester Prep graduates after they get into college. All Rochester Prep students apply to four year colleges, and at the end of the year there is a big Signing Day celebration where seniors reveal which university they will attend.
Rochester Prep High School is also incredibly proud to partner with the Rochester Institute of Technology. From professors coming to teach in our classrooms, to utilizing the RIT Campus and facilities in myriad ways, our partnership is deeply rewarding and beneficial to our scholars. Watch the video below to learn more about some of our seniors' capstone projects, a months-long project where they have the opportunity to go in-depth on a topic, gain exposure to RIT faculty, and have an authentic college experience.
We invite you to dream big with your child. When on the path to college, any future is within their grasp.
Rochester Prep is the first charter school in Rochester to serve students from Kindergarten through 12th grade. The benefit of a full K-12 charter school is that once you choose Rochester Prep, your child can stick with us until they walk across the stage at high school graduation. Parents won’t have to go through the process of choosing another school for their child every few years, and students don’t have to worry about being separated from their friends. The next school decision you will have to make is which college to attend!
Rochester Prep welcomes all students, regardless of ability, Special Education needs, or English Language Learner status. Rochester Prep has continued to expand its special education services, and there is a dedicated special education coordinator in every building to ensure that children on Individualized Education Plans are getting the extra support that they need. Click here to learn more about our special education program.
Students interact with a diverse Rochester Prep staff that is deeply committed to culturally responsive teaching. This is reflected in everything we do, from the texts that students read and the songs that students sing in music class to enrichment activities and school celebrations. Rochester Prep is a place where students can feel proud to be exactly who they are.
Walk through the hallways at Rochester Prep Elementary on a Friday morning, and you may see a scholar high-fiving the school mascot (Jay the Dragon) or hear students chanting, “Diligent dragons ready to learn!” Over at West Elementary, where Leo the Lion is the mascot, students are encouraged to learn as a pack. Each homeroom has its own class cheer, and you can hear them compete enthusiastically during weekly assemblies to see which homeroom is the loudest. And while an otter may seem like an unusual mascot choice at Elementary School 3, students eagerly await their field trip to the Buffalo Zoo to meet Ollie the Otter in person.
At Rochester Prep West Campus Middle School in November you will find scholars ferociously reading book after book to win the reading competition against Kings Collegiate Middle School in Brooklyn. In May at Rochester Prep Brooks Campus Middle School you will see students taking the stage, vying to win the school talent show. Rochester Prep High school students root for their classmates as they compete in football, basketball, track, and volleyball. No matter which Rochester Prep school you are in, you will find our students bursting with school spirit.
So who's ready to join Rochester Prep? Click here to learn more about the application process.