• UR as the EPO

    The University of Rochester has been approved by the New York State Education Department (NYSED) to serve as the EPO (Educational Partnership Organization) for East High School starting in the 2015-16 school year.

    What is an EPO?

    An EPO, the equivalent to becoming the superintendent for East High School, is a partner in helping to improve a school that is on the verge of being closed by the New York State Education Department.

    Mission and Vision

    We believe that East High can be one of the finest urban high schools in the nation.

    The goal is not to create a new school or “take over” East High, but rather to engage the East High faculty, staff, students, families, and the community it serves in improving the lives and experience of East’s students. The University of Rochester will provide overall management and supervision of East High in reforms that will lead to ongoing improvement.

    Our mission is to prepare all students for a successful transition to adulthood. It is our vision to create—alongside students, families, teachers, staff, and community members—a comprehensive community high school where all children are welcome and served—one that will become a model for urban school reform.

    The people at East High will be “all in … all the time.” Everyone involved will direct their full professional efforts to helping create a positive and successful education experience for East’s students.

    Planning Process 

    The University’s plan reflects the research and hard work of a dedicated team of professionals from the University working in collaboration with a leadership design team comprised of educational leaders and teachers from East High School, the central administration of the Rochester City School District, and representatives from each of the four collective bargaining units that serve East High. The process was led by Warner School Professor Steve Uebbing, who brought experience as a school superintendent and expertise in urban school reform to these collaborative community efforts. To facilitate the planning process, the East High planning team created seven committees that focus on district leadership and capacity; school leader practices and decisions; curriculum development and support; teacher practices and decisions; student social and emotional development health; family and community engagement; and student life.

    The plan is based on extensive input from community stakeholders over the last nine months. All of East’s students participated in discussing their vision for the school during social studies classes led by a team of 24 East student leaders, and many parents and community members contributed through community meetings.  East High personnel participated in several ways, including 57 serving on planning committees and taskforces on a range of issues. Representatives of many community organizations served on committees and taskforces or provided substantive assistance.  We are deeply grateful for the contributions of so many people committed to the success of East High School.

    The proposal reflects our sincere belief that there must be fundamental changes at East High School, and urgently, so that student performance can improve. East High School is in imminent danger of being closed, and this proposal reflects what we believe is required to make the necessary shift in the school culture, the academic program, and supports for East High School to succeed.

    2014-15 Changes at East High

    The University was been given approval by the State to lead new initiatives at East High during the 2014-15 school year that immediately increased learning opportunities for students and provided the opportunity to pilot and refine some new innovations before they were included in an EPO proposal. Some of these changes include: new non-Regents math and science courses for seniors and independent study options, building-based scheduling for students; leadership coaching for East High administrators; additional social workers and counselors; and parent advocates.

    Contact Us

    To get involved or to learn more about the future of East High, contact us at easthighepo@warner.rochester.edu and (585) 275-8270.