The Metropolitan Expeditionary Learning School, “A School for a Sustainable City,” is a NYC Outward Bound School (www.nycoutwardbound.org) serving over 840 students in grades 6 through 12. We use the EL learning model, with a vision of increasing student engagement and elevating and expanding student achievement with learning that is challenging, meaningful and adventurous.
MELS opened in September of 2010 with a beautiful new campus on Metropolitan Avenue in District 28. It offers students a rigorous college preparatory program, with particular emphasis on sustainability. MELS has been recognized as a Showcase School by the New York City Department of Education and selected as one of only ten Expeditionary Learning Mentor Schools across the country. The school has been recognized in the New York Post as one of the “hidden gems” in the New York City public school system.
In addition to a 98% graduation rate since we have opened, our students have been accepted to a variety of prestigious schools and received national recognition and scholarships (including a National Merit Finalist). MELS provides a full range of athletic teams, which have won several city championships, as well as an award-winning Speech and Debate Team, which has placed students at the state and national competitions. Our music students have also been selected for the Queens Borough Orchestra, and several of our graduates have gone on to well-known programs in the arts. Our teachers have won the city-wide Gaynor McGown Award and have been nominated for the Big Apple and Klingenstein Awards.
MELS is one of the most diverse schools in the city and the state. The rich diversity of Queens is reflected in our school population and we are proud to be a school that invites all students to apply.
Our students consistently outperform city, borough, and comparison group averages for 4-year graduation rate and 6-month postsecondary enrollment. Our 18 month college enrollment is among the highest in NYC.
For the third straight year, MELS was recognized as one of only 43 schools across the entire city to be designated a “Showcase School,” hosting visitors from other schools and modeling best practices for “Collaboration that Fosters Student Achievement.” Our teacher teams and co-leadership model support our work of building student collaboration in classrooms.
MELS teachers have repeatedly been recognized for quality instructional practice. They have been featured in various EL Education print and video publications as models for instructional practice that have been viewed throughout the world. Our staff members have garnered numerous nominations and awards that recognize masterful teaching (including the Big Apple Teaching Awards, Gaynor McCown Award, Fund For Teachers Grants, and Klingenstein Award). MELS is recognized in EL Education as both a Credentialed School and Mentor School.
We are an unscreened school- students are not screened based on test scores or grades. Students complete an application with the DOE to apply, being that we are a public school.