AN UPDATE TO REIMAGINE NYC SCHOOLS
December 10, 2021
Dear Pratt Community,
We have exciting news to share with you. Pratt Institute and Bank Street College of Education will receive grant funding to collaborate on the creation of a new secondary school that brings together the power of design thinking with a drive to social justice, ultimately empowering students to make change in the world.
The joint proposal for a new school dedicated to design and social justice—developed by Bank Street and Pratt—was selected for funding by the NYC Department of Education (DOE) through its Imagine Schools NYC initiative. News of the proposal was shared with the Pratt community in January 2020, a few months before the Imagine Schools initiative went on hold due to the pandemic. At that time, we were one of the 90 finalists, selected from more than 200 entries. The DOE recently informed us that we are one of six schools chosen to receive funding for this incredible opportunity.
The partnership between Bank Street and Pratt reflects our shared commitment to building a more equitable and inclusive world through education. The vision for the school centers on a strong mission and culture, community partnerships, youth voice and choice, and a robust academic model that will help students become problem solvers and design thinkers. The project is made possible with generous external support including XQ Institute and the NYC Department of Education.
In today’s rapidly changing environment, it is critical that Pratt’s expertise in design, participatory practice, activism, and practical problem solving will be brought into the future of public schools in our neighborhood and New York City. The Pratt and Bank Street collaboration connects Pratt’s academic excellence and our history of engagement with the local community through the Saturday Art School, which opened in 1897, with Bank Street’s visionary, inquiry-based approach to student and educator learning.
As we celebrate this important moment, we thank all of those in the Pratt community and beyond who participated in our workshops in 2019 and provided insights on what would make the ideal public school.
With much gratitude and appreciation,
Associate Provost for Research and Strategic Partnerships