While America is falling behind globally — we were ranked 24th in the world on the most recent Program for International Student Assessment scores — BASIS is soaring. In math, reading and science three BASIS schools ranked above Shanghai, Korea, Finland and Singapore. If BASIS schools formed a country it would be ranked top in the world. Even compared to students whose families are in the same income brackets, BASIS is still performing 18 percent better on average.
But there’s a catch. If you’re looking for a place that will coddle your kids, you’ve come to the wrong school. As headmaster Hadley Ruggles tells me, “Brooklyn is a progressive place, and it looks like we have rolled back the clock.”
The students are taught grammar. Math in the early grades involves drilling. Students are required to take three years of Latin. Writing is focused on analytical work, not “journaling.”
... Students as young as eighth grade are taking APs and scoring well. Plus, middle-schoolers take biology, chemistry and physics classes three days a week each.
The teachers have come from top college and graduate programs, and many have left their own fields to teach.