NYC has the most segregated school system in the country. Our public schools are more segregated now than they were in the 1960’s.

After working in NYC schools for the past 5 years, I realized our schools don’t mirror the diversity we see each day on the train or on the street. Our school buildings represent the inequitable society we live in, and are still segregated by race and socio-economic status. It’s time to integrate NYC!

There can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way in which it treats its children.”

Nelson Mandela

I wanted to learn more, so I reached out to Teens Take Charge, a student-led movement for educational equity in NYC.
Teens take charge is an organization run by students, for students! The movement has over 50 members from all 5 boroughs in NYC.

Check out our conversation with Sophie from Teens Take Charge on how to integrate NYC.

How Teens Take Charge got started!

Teens Take Charge began as a place where students were encouraged to talk about their experiences. This opened up the conversation for students to share what was going on in their school building. Check out their story HERE.

And their Campaign Demands?

  1. No more “screens”!
    Discriminatory admissions “screens” in high schools have a profound segregating effect on the system. Of the 30 most academically screened high schools, 27 are majority white and Asian (in a system that’s less than one-third white and Asian). None of those 30 schools approach the system average for economic need.
  2. Equitable Resources
    a. Guarantee all high school students quality, paid internship opportunities in the summer and during the school year.
    b. Hire more guidance counselors and college counselors to help support student interest.
    c. Create consortiums or nearby or co-located high schools and allow students to participate in sports, clubs, and advanced courses at any school in their radius if their school does not offer that class or activity.
  3. Integrated Schools for ALL!!!
    Interested in better understanding the Teens Take Charge demands? Check out their campaign demands HERE!

Interested in getting involved?


  1. Join the movement and Connect with Teens Take Charge.
  2. Read other students testimony and share your story!


  1. Want Teens Take Charge to give a presentation at your school? REQUEST A VISIT!
  2. Connect you students with the work Teens Take Charge is doing!
    Check out Lesson Plans, Books, Podcasts and Articles that you can provide your students with on the Teens Take Charge website!


  1. Support Student Leadership! Help Integrate NYC! Donate HERE!
  2. Follow Teens Take Charge on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook.
  3. Listen to our podcast episode on Spotify with Teens Take Charge and learn more!

Integrate NYC Schools with Teens Take Charge!

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