Malverne High School has a culture that encourages students to engage in rigorous coursework while maintaining a “success for all students” philosophy that is built around expanding learning opportunities well outside the traditional school day. The school expanded access to higher-level Advanced Placement courses while providing support such as increased class time and an additional class period every other day. This is coupled with an extensive, eight-week after-school review program leading into the College Board Examinations.
AP enrollment is reflective of school demographics—there is no “opportunity gap” when it comes to access to challenging courses. Over 60% of AP enrollment is from minority groups, with 50% being African-American. Malverne also provides a comprehensive SAT/ACT/PSAT prep program that meets on weeknights and Saturday mornings in the summer, fall, and winter.
The school provides additional learning time through regularly scheduled extra-help sessions, as well as an after-school Homework Center that gives students access to subject-specific teachers, computers, and peer tutors. Also, a mentoring program assigns teachers to students who need intervention to achieve success.
Malverne High has also teamed up with local colleges to provide students with enrichment in math and science through Adelphi University’s Saturday STEP program. During the summer months, English language learners receive services from Hofstra University, which helps students to continue to expand their language development when school is not in session.
Malverne High School is a school where no student falls through the cracks. Newcomers to the school are met with support. Malverne proactively addresses problems by meeting with incoming at-risk eighth grade students as early as June. A summer program is then designed to keep them involved in school and help them transition into the high school. Students participate in a wide variety of activities, from strength and conditioning, to discussing current events, to volunteering at a local soup kitchen. They also have the opportunity to meet important personnel who will advocate and support them in the high school. Malverne provides the same opportunities to its transfer students.
The Malverne philosophy is to remove and overcome obstacles to student learning. According to Principal Vincent Romano, rather than focus on “why students can’t,” we focus on “How we can.”