BY: Chelsea McCormick
The boroughs of New York City are home to some of the most diverse and worldly individuals in the country. There is a mix of race, religious beliefs and economic class. They are also some of the leaders in bringing together diverse groups of people.
School environments are one of the displays of diversity that is clear to see. Socioeconomic classes can vary depending on what school a child attends. Brooklyn Prospect Charter School, now in its fourth year, is one of a small but growing group of schools that is consciously trying to fill seats with students from varied racial, ethnic and socioeconomic groups in order to provide a different but better atmosphere for learning.
Other schools similar to Brooklyn Prospect Charter School are making more of a conscious effort to create a diverse atmosphere on all levels. The trend is becoming more popular among parents. They are recognizing that the world is a diverse place and their child needs to have experiences with that fact.
Urban middle-class parents are those who are expressing the most interest in diverse charter schools.
“All we can say at this point is that this provides the best opportunity in a generation for us to integrate our urban schools,” said Mike Petrilli, whose new book, The Diverse Schools Dilemma, appears in stores next week. The essence of education can be much better achieved when students who come from different walks of life and backgrounds surround each other.
The positive reactions from both students and parents towards Brooklyn Prospect Charter School and the idea of it are evident. The school has significantly expanded each year and is now adding a freshman class to its middle school. The benefits of a school such as this can travel fast and the diversity can be a goal of many more successful schools in the area and nation wide.
Students of different backgrounds can gain so much knowledge and experience from each other. They can ultimately create bonds that may have not been possible before and gain insights that can be carried with them for the rest of their life.