This past November, the New York State Board of Regents approved the application for the Lois and Richard Nicotra Early College Charter School (NECCS). The school will open in September 2018, initially projected to serve approximately 144 students in grades 8 and 9 in the first year. Each year, the school will expand by adding an additional grade until it reaches the full capacity of grades 8 through 12 in 2023, with a projected enrollment of 403 students.
The NECCS will be join the Integration Charter Schools organization which includes; Lavelle Preparatory Charter School and New Ventures Charter School. The organization began in 2009 with the opening of the Lavelle Preparatory Charter School.
NECCS will collaborate with St. John’s University to prepare students for college and beyond. The guiding principle is stated in the school’s mission statement; “to promote an accelerated pathway to higher education, enabling students to graduate from high school with a Regents Diploma and as many as 60 college credits from St. John’s University, greatly increasing the likelihood of college graduation.”
The school’s program “will be divided into two components, college preparation and early college. Throughout grades 8-10, students will prepare for success within the college experience by taking prerequisite courses required for Regents diplomas and to prepare for college level academics.”
The early college component will begin as early as 11th grade, when students will begin attending college courses for credit at St. John’s University. By graduation, NECCS students will have the opportunity to earn up to 60 college credits, with career emphasis within the criminal justice and business fields.”
“We believe that education is the key to success and we know that the key to Staten Island’s future is educational opportunity for all children,” Mrs. Lois Nicotra stated.
Mrs. Nicotra continued, “We see the time and talent dedicated by the Integration Charter School team to the students in their current schools, Lavelle Preparatory Charter School and New Ventures. That gives us the confidence to lend our name to this new school.”
Mr. Richard Nicotra continued, “This new school will provide a program that will bridge students to St. John’s University so they gain college credit while they are still in high school. St. John’s is our Alma Mater, and so this feels like a good fit on every level. Lois is a former school teacher and we have a special place in our hearts for the power of education.”
Location and Admission
The Lois and Richard Nicotra Early College Charter School has requested space in a Staten Island District 31 school building. If no public space is available, NECCS will share space with the Lavelle Preparatory Charter School and New Ventures Charter School in a new private corporate space located at the Teleport, which is owned by the Nicotra Group.
Nicotra Early College Charter School will utilize a weighted lottery system that will focus on hosting a student cohort that includes 35% with Individualized Education Programs (IEPs). The school will also target English Language Learners (ELLs), students with special needs as well as economically disadvantaged.
By Community Education Council 31 President Michael Reilly.