“Integrate Now” press conference Feb. 14, 2019

ON MARCH 29, 2018, we unveiled our Enrollment Equity Plan to integrate New York City high schools.

After months of vague promises and inaction, we announced two expectations of Mayor de Blasio:

  1. By the end of the 2018-19 school year, approve a comprehensive plan to racially, socioeconomically, and academically integrate New York City’s 480 public high schools.

  2. Starting in the 2019-20 school year, provide the following to every student in a segregated, high poverty high school:

    1. A paid summer internship aligned to the school-based SYEP model.

    2. The opportunity to participate in sports or extracurricular programs offered at another public high school, or vouchers to pay for equivalent programs on the private market.

    3. At least 60 minutes of one-on-one college and career counseling per month during junior and senior years.

* * *

ON MARCH 29, 2019, Teens Take Charge direct action team leader Tiffani Torres called in to WNYC’s Brian Lehrer Show and asked Mayor de Blasio to meet with us to discuss our proposal. The question prompted a long exchange. Listen below.

We stand ready to work with the Mayor, the NYC Department of Education, the Mayor’s School Diversity Advisory Group, and other leaders to create an equitable, integrated system of high schools. We’re just an email away: teenstakechargenyc@gmail.com.



“The Ones Left Behind,” December 3, 2018, Brooklyn Public Library

“The Ones Left Behind,” December 3, 2018, Brooklyn Public Library


Too often, decisions about our schools are made without our voices. No longer. This growing coalition of high school students from across the five boroughs will not rest until our public school system lives up to its promise of providing us an equitable education.

Through oral & written testimony, discussions with policymakers, and interactive events, we — the students of New York City — are taking our schools & futures into our hands. 

Are you a NYC high school student? Join us by filling out this form.

Teens Take Charge was co-founded in 2017 by Nelson Luna and Whitney Stephenson.

Watch the video below to learn more about our origin story.

Teens Take Charge is a program of The Bell.

The Bell’s other program is the student-led Miseducation podcast. Listen to the latest episode below!