Zuckerberg-Funded Tech Startup-School to Open Location on the LES Next Year

Posted on: October 20th, 2015 at 5:17 am by
This image has been archived or removed.

A Mark Zuckerburg-funded private school is moving east to the neighborhood.

AltSchool is a trendy new private school with a curriculum much like a dot-com startup. Meaning, lessons are taught with a technology-driven approach. The progressive educational facility inaugurated the first east coast branch earlier this fall in Brooklyn Heights, its sixth outside Silicon Valley. By next school year (fall 2016), there will be a campus for the Lower East Side, offering services for kindergarten through 6th grade (though, such classifications are avoided). The official website reveals the address as 310 East Houston, the condo building that currently houses Banco Popular in the ground level.

The New York Post published a lengthy feature about the “micro school” over the weekend.

Every pupil gets their own tablet or Chromebook; wall-mounted video cameras called “superpowers” record children’s learning moments and kiddie confessionals for teachers to review.

Every student gets a to-do list called a “playlist” where they focus on whatever interests them, from writing an opera about water exploration to creating vessels that protect an egg when it falls.

Instead kids are divided into three broadly defined classrooms: pre-K, “lower elementary” for younger kids and “upper elementary” for older kids.

There’s nothing so pedestrian as roll call — kids sign in via an app on an iPad at the entry. It’s connected to an online platform called My.AltSchool that tracks everything from a child’s Personalized Learning Plan to allergies.

The schedule changes daily, but midmorning on a recent Wednesday, some 6- to 8-year-olds studied Rembrandt’s “The Night Watch” on their Chromebooks in one corner, while others engaged in writing lessons. There’s no bell to signal the end of a period or recess. Instead, “learning blocks” are meant to end organically.

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is apparenrly a big proponent. He reportedly led a $100 million financing round for the school last spring.

Recent Stories

‘Forsythia’ Aims to Make it Where Kitty’s Canteen Couldn’t

With Kitty’s Canteen closed and in the history books, another nightlifer is looking to open a restaurant at 9 Stanton Street. One that revives Italian cuisine at this address. The newcomer is a 24-seat Italian restaurant called Forsythia. The liquor license application questionnaire lists Jacob David Siwak as the principal for the business. At the […]

Man Mugged at Knifepoint Outside Clinton Street Pawn Shop

A man was mugged at knifepoint outside a Clinton Street pawn shop last Tuesday, police said. The victim was reportedly attacked by six crooks, described as African American males, while trying to sell his Juul vape pen to his friend. It all happened outside the pawn shop at 101 Clinton Street. The suspects – one […]

The Lower East Side has the Largest Surplus of Unsold Luxury Condos, Thanks to One Manhattan Square

The city currently has a problem unloading the luxury condos flooding the market. The New York Times last week published a piece about the glut of unsold apartments in the luxury stratosphere. That, despite the bonkers pace of construction in the high-end market, supply is outstripping demand. The data, culled from a StreetEasy audit, found […]

Help Support Gem Spa on St. Mark’s Place Tomorrow

A perfect storm of misfortune has plagued the Gem Spa these last few months, causing a precipitous loss in business. From landlord issues to the temporary ban on cigarette sales and the loss of Zoltar, it’s hitting the bottom line. Fear of forever closure is palpable at 131 Second Avenue. The plight of the East […]

With Champ Depot Out, Bowery Corner Gains Another Gallery

For more than a decade, the Champ Depot restaurant supply company occupied 176 Bowery. Now, its former home is completely empty and fetching for a new deep-pocketed tenant. There is a torrent of listings on Craigslist fishing for suitors (“last corner retail in Nolita”), yet one was already found to occupy the second floor. It’s […]