"The mission of New York City Charter School of the Arts (City School of the Arts) is to inspire a diverse community of young people to engage with the arts as a pathway to rich and rigorous academic scholarship and a creative purposeful life."


FAQ

Why an arts-based school?

We Believe That Learning Is Most Profound When It's Fueled by the Creative Process.

Creative learning engages more than just the intellect: it also activates kids' social, emotional, aesthetic, and physical capacities. That's important, because to be successful in today's complex world, graduates need more than strong academic skills. They also need well developed creative and socio-emotional tools like problem-solving, critical thinking, empathy, resilience, and a willingness to engage across differences. 

 

How do you know creative education is effective?

Researchers are Documenting the Effects of the Arts on Academic Outcomes. 

In June of 2014, a study was published by Boston Children’s Hospital that showed that musical training was having a significant impact on the ‘executive function’ of the brain, or cognitive control. This was evident in children who had at least two years of music study. Executive functioning is at the top of important brain functions, affecting information processing, retention, and problem solving.

In September of 2014, a study was released from Northwestern University that revealed the impact of music study on the central nervous systems of at-risk youth. It is the first study to highlight the positive influence of music study on the brains of disadvantaged children.

In 2010, the Missouri Alliance Arts for Arts Education published the results of an exhaustive, three-year study regarding the effect of fine arts education on academic achievement, discipline and levels of student engagement.  

 

How Does Your Enrollment Process Work?

We're Required by New York State law to have a lottery-based admissions process. 

And that's 100% aligned with our belief that all students have the right to a high-quality arts-based education. Our lottery ensures that applicants are selected at random. There is no audition, portfolio or interview. Students not accepted in the lottery will be placed on our waiting list for spaces that may become available in the future. City School of the Arts will give first preference to students who reside in our district. Because we believe in the power of a progressive, arts-integrated program for all students, we will also give preference to students who are classified as "at risk of academic failure." We can increase the chances of enrolling this population in compliance with state law by giving preferences to students eligible for free and reduced lunch and English Language Learners. 


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How did CSA get created?

our origin story is grounded in collaboration.

In 2002, Geoffrey Kiorpes’ first piano class at a charter school in the Bronx featured six kids playing keyboards in a storage closet. Kate Quarfordt’s theater classes debuted the next year in a trailer parked in the lot behind the school. From those humble beginnings, a thriving performing arts program took root.

Enter Jamie Davidson...

After graduating from Harvard with her EdM, Jamie joined the school as an instructional leader tasked with boosting academic outcomes. In her new role, she quickly saw the potential of creating an innovative school where the arts and student leadership are not the domain of a particular department, but at the core of the school's mission.

So…

Jamie, Geoffrey and Kate decided to double down on their beliefs about how kids learn best. They teamed up with a talented group of artists, educators, local parents, entrepreneurs and leaders—among them several of their former students—and the dream of City School of the Arts was born.