Whitney M. Young Gifted & Talented Leadership Academy
|Whitney M. Young Gifted & Talented Leadership Academy|
|17900 Harvard Avenue
Cleveland, Ohio, (Cuyahoga County), 44128
|School type||Coeducational high school Public, National Blue Ribbon School|
|Motto||Aspire, Achieve, Apply|
|School district||Cleveland Metropolitan School District|
|Authority||Cleveland Metropolitan School District|
|Oversight||Cleveland Metropolitan School District|
|Superintendent||Mr. Eric Gordan|
|Principal||Mrs. Karen M. Byron-Johnson|
|Academic Superintendent||Mrs. Rojeana Howell-Curtis|
|Chief custodian||Mr. Salaman|
|Grade 9||25 (Class of 2016)|
|Grade 10||32 (Class of 2015)|
|Grade 11||33 (Class of 2014)|
|Grade 12||43 (Class of 2013)|
|Average class size||17|
|Student to teacher ratio||20:1|
|Color(s)||Black and Gold|
|Slogan||Whitney Young is distinctively excellent.|
|Athletics||Mrs. Karen Bartlett (director)|
|Athletics conference||Senate League|
|Rival||Ginn Academy, Cleveland School of the Arts|
|Accreditation(s)||Ohio Department of Education|
|Average SAT scores||914 (2008-2009)|
|Average ACT scores||19 (2008-2009)|
|Newspaper||'The Whitney Word'|
|Communities served||Greater Cleveland|
|Feeder schools||All Greater Cleveland Schools|
|School Hours||8:00A - 2:30P - High School|
|Head Counselor||Mrs. Beatrice Jefferson|
|Mission||The mission of Whitney Young is to provide an excellent education to gifted and talented students from diverse backgrounds. This is accomplished through an accelerated program that emphasizes leadership, self-motivation, independent thought, and intellectual curiosity.|
Whitney M. Young Gifted & Talented Leadership Academy (also known as Whitney Young Gifted Education Campus, Whitney Young High School or Whitney Young School) is a selective-enrollment public school in Cleveland, in the U.S. state of Ohio, notable as the city's first public gifted and talented school.. Named after Whitney M. Young Jr., a prominent civil rights leader, the school is located in Cleveland's Lee-Harvard neighborhood.
Whitney Young is less than a half-mile from John F. Kennedy High School. It is CMSD's most eastern high school, located less than a half-mile from the Cleveland - Warrensville Heights border. During the 2008-2009 school year Whitney Young served 16% of CMSD gifted students. As of May 2010, the majority of the student population is African-American, and the majority of the students reside in the immediate neighborhood.
The school has scored among the top high schools in the state of Ohio. In May 2009, Whitney Young was featured on Channel 3 News in Cleveland for begin just one of four Cleveland schools to have a 100% graduation rate. That same year, the school was ranked among the top high schools in the United States by U.S. News and World Report. On August 27, 2010 Whitney Young became the first and only Cleveland school to receive the state's highest rating of Excellent with Distinction. Whitney Young is currently listed on Ohio's Schools of Promise List, it has been on the list for 9 consecutive school years, starting in school year 2001-2002. Whitney Young has been listed as an Ohio School of Promise more than any other school in the state.
- 1 History
- 2 Academics
- 3 Schools
- 4 2010 State Report Card
- 5 Effective Leadership Academy
- 6 Controversy
- 7 Extracurricular activities
- 8 Honors and awards
- 9 Alumnus / notable people
- 10 See also
- 11 References
- 12 External links
In 2007 Whitney Young became one of two middle schools in Cleveland to take part in the Rotsky Foundation. This program allows selected eighth grade students to participate in a mentoring program, and receive a scholarship in their senior year to any college/university. The students will remain in the program until they complete high school, regardless if they remain in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District or not.
Whitney Young's 2008-2009 school year was a dedication to Reginald Lamont Dudley Jr., a 13 year-old (Whitney Young Eighth Grader) who was murdered October 4, 2008 in his home.
In December 2011, the State of Ohio Department of Education released the first ever ranking of all Ohio schools. Whitney Young ranked third in CMSD and 180th in the state.
The school building that is now home to Whitney Young was opened in 1951 as Hoban Dominican High School, an all-girls Catholic School. In 1971 the Cleveland Metropolitan School District (formally Cleveland Municipal School District) brought the school from the Cleveland Diocese. When the Cleveland Municipal School District first opened Whitney Young in 1971 (a few months after the death of Whitney Young, who died March 11, 1971), it was an all-girls school.
- 1973-1974 School year—school opened as Whitney M. Young Junior High School
- 2003-2004 School year—name changed to Whitney M. Young School
- 2008-2009 School year—name changed to Whitney M. Young High School
- 2010-2011 School year—name changed to Whitney M. Young Gifted & Talented Leadership Academy
In the 2003-2004 school year the Cleveland Municipal School District begin adding one additional grade level to Whitney Young until reaching grade 12. Whitney Young's first high school graduating class was the Class of 2007 with former principal Alisa McKinnie. In June 2009 Whitney Young held its first eighth grade promotion (Class of 2013) since it added secondary courses to the school in 2003.
- 1973-1974 School year—school opened with grades 6-8
- 2003-2004 School year— changed to grades 6-9
- 2004-2005 School year— changed to grades 6-10
- 2005-2006 School year— changed to grades 6-11
- 2006-2007 School year— changed to grades 6-12
- 2010-2011 School year— changed to grades 2-12
Cleveland Schools Transformation Plan 2010
The Transformation Plan that was announced on Tuesday, January 5, 2010 categorized Whitney Young as a Growth School. This plan called for major changes throughout the Cleveland Metropolitan School District. Growth Schools are schools that are showing the strongest absolute academic performance or strong improvement trends. These schools will be provided the autonomy and support they need to continue to improve student outcomes, with a strong expectation for continued growth. This plan also called to close Gracemount School, which is less than two miles from Whitney Young. Gracemount served gifted students in grades K-8, but ranked in Academic Emergency. With Gracemount closing, their students in grades 2-8 labeled gifted will be sent to Whitney Young effective the 2010-2011 school year. As part of the Transformation Whitney Young would begin serving grades 2-12 effective the 2010-2011 school year.
CMSD hosted a Transformation Community Meeting for Whitney Young on Wednesday, January 6, 2010 at John F. Kennedy High School. Parents, staff, community members and students were welcome and encouraged to attend the meeting. Whitney Young's Principal Karen Byron-Johnson informed parents about the district's plans for Whitney Young in the coming weeks and school year.
CMSD Board voted on the plan on March 9, 2010 and approved it.
Whitney Young consistently ranks in the top of the state in terms of test scores and attendance rate. The school offers numerous Honors and Advanced Placement courses for students in grades 7-12 and Gifted & Talented courses for students in grades 2-6. Advanced Placement is offered for Physics, English, European History, Environmental Science, Statistics and Calculus. Honors courses are as followed Algebra, Geometry, Pre-Calculus, World History, American History, American Government, Street law, Spanish, Physical Science, Biology, Chemistry, English, Creative Writing, Poetry, and French. As of the 2010-2011 School Year Whitney Young only offers Physical Education, Health, Band, Choir, Art, Drawing & Painting, African-American History, Senior Seminar and OGT Math & OGT Science as regular course work. The school requires all high school students to take academic electives, honors and Advanced Placement courses.
Whitney Young currently uses weighted grade point averages; therefore basing student GPAs on a 5.0 scale. Honors/ Advanced Placement course carries the following GPA points:
A - 5
B - 4
C - 3
D - 1
F - 0
I - 0
Regular course are as followed:
A - 4
B - 3
C - 2
D - 1
F - 0
I - 0
As of the 2011-2012 school year all classes at Whitney Young rather honors, advance placement or regular uses the honors grading scale:
|F||67% and below|
|I||No data available|
Whitney Young graduation requirements differ from those of CMSD and the State of Ohio, although students who only meet CMSD requirements are eligible for graduation.
|Subject||WMY Credits Recommended||CMSD Credits Required||Required Courses|
|English||4||4||English 1, 2 & 3, AP English 4|
|Mathematics||5||3/ 4 (as of Class of 2014)||Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2|
|Science||4||3||Physical Science, Biology, Chemistry|
|Social Studies||4||3||World History, American History, American Government|
|Foreign Language||3||1||Spanish 1/ French 1|
|Physical Education||0.5||0.5||Physical Education|
|Senior Seminar||0.5||0.5||Senior Seminar|
|Electives||5.5||5.5/ 5 (as of Class of 2014)|
In addition to those requirements, students must also have:
- Passing scores on all five parts of the Ohio Graduation Test
- A minimum of 40 community service hours
- A 2.5 or higher cumulative grade point average
- No more than five unexcused absences
Whitney Young also requires students to meet credit requirements to be passed to the next grade level.
- From grade 9 to grade 10 - students are required to have at least five credits with a 2.5 or higher cumulative grade point average
- From grade 10 to grade 11 - students are required to have at least 11 credits with a 2.5 or higher cumulative grade point average
- From grade 11 to grade 12 - students are required to have at least 16 credits with a 2.5 or higher cumulative grade point average
Effective the 2011-2012 school year Whitney Young begun following a schedule different from other CMSD schools. All classes were extended to 50 minute periods for students in grades 2-12. The school day ran from 8:00A - 2:30P; with the exception of students in grade 12, whose school day ranged from 8A - 12:42P, 8A - 10A, 8:50A - 10A, 8:50A - 12:42P or 10:58A - 12:42P. The last class for students in grade 12 ends at 12:42P.
|Period||Start time||End time|
|5||10:58A||11:48A||Elementary lunch period|
|6||11:52A||12:42P||Middle school lunch period|
|7||12:46P||1:36P||High school lunch period|
|Period||Start time||End time||Note|
|5||10:22A||11:02A||Elementary lunch period|
|6||11:06A||11:46A||Middle school lunch period|
|7||11:50A||12:30P||High school lunch period|
School day length changes
- 1973-1974 School year—school opened operating 8:00A - 2:30P
- 2006-2007 School year— operational hours changed to 8:00A - 1:45P - high school and 8:00A - 2:30P - middle school
- 2008-2009 School year— operational hours changed to 8:00A - 2:30P - all grades
- 2010-2011 School year— operational hours remained 8:00A - 2:30P - all grades, with the exception of one Wednesday per month operational hours changed to 8:00A - 12:30P - all grades.
- 2012-2013 School year— operational hours changed to 8:00A - 2:30P - high school and 8:25A - 2:05P - grades 2-8, with the exception of one Wednesday per month operational hours changed to 8:00A - 12:30P - all grades.
- January 22, 2013 — operational hours changed to 8:00A - 2:30P - all grades, with the exception of one Wednesday per month operational hours changed to 8:00A - 12:30P - all grades.
Whitney Young currently is composed of two buildings, the 'Main Building' (High School) and the 'Annex' connected by a tunnel.
The Main Building is the front building of the school. The Office, Principal's Office, Cafeteria, Gymnasium, high school/ main Media Center, high school/ main Computer Lab and Auditorium are all located within the Main Building. All visitors must enter in this building before proceeding to the Annex or anywhere throughout the school.
All High School students classes are located in the Main Building, known as the "High School". Some high school students take an art class in the Annex, this however is the only time high schoolers are in the annex. High School students switch classes just as every other high school, all classes are 50 minutes including lunch periods.
Tunnel and Annex
The tunnel is an extended brick wall walkway between the Main Building and the Annex. The tunnel contains lockers for Junior High students. The Annex is the back building of Whitney Young, it contains The Assistant Principal's Office, Grades 2-8 Media Center and Grades 2-8 Computer Lab. All rooms in this building is distinguished with an "A" at the end (EX: Room 208A, Room 303A, 214A)
All Elementary students classes are in the "Annex". There is one class per grade level for students in grades 2-5. Students remain in these classes all day, with the exception for Breakfast, Lunch, Physical Education and Music classes which are located in the high school.
Junior High/ Middle School
All Junior High students classes are also located in the Annex. There are typically two-three classes per grade level for students in grades 6-8. Students switch classes throughout the day (with 50 minute periods) and remain in the Annex with the exceptions of Foreign Language Classes, Lunch, Breakfast, Gym, Music, and Band which are located in the high school.
2010 State Report Card
On August 27, 2010, Ohio Department of Education released the 2009-2010 school year report cards for both schools and districts across The State of Ohio. Cleveland Metropolitan School District's CEO Eugene Sanders held a press conference at Whitney Young to announce that the district as a whole has received a rating of Continuous Improvement (C average) on the state report card (up from the previous year D average). The press conference also revealed that Whitney Young was rated Excellent with Distinction, the highest rating possible to receive (the first and only Cleveland school to receive this rating). Whitney Young's principal Karen Byron-Johnson spoke briefly about how she and her students reached their goal in such a low performing district. While CEO Eugene Sanders was quoted saying "You can go to Shaker Heights, Solon, Beachwood, you can go to any other school in the state, and none of them have performed better than Whitney Young students.
Effective Leadership Academy
Effective Leadership Academy also known as ELA is a non-profit 501(3)c organization that was founded in 2008 by Flo Brett. ELA works with Northeast Ohio schools to provide a dynamic, results-based youth leadership program for students in grades six through twelve. The ELA’s mission is to help young people turn their potential into performance by developing their most valuable asset – themselves. This innovative, “inside out” self-development process focuses on three critical elements: personal leadership, healthy behaviors, and interpersonal skills. During the 2010-2011 school year WMY teamed up with Effective Leadership Academy and Cleveland Leadership Center to deliver a leadership training program to 30 WMY seniors from the Class of 2011. Their once a week senior seminar, delivered by ELA focuses on leadership and character-building skills. The ELA program returned to WMY during the 2011-12 school year to work with 15 seniors from the Class of 2012, the group met twice a week for fifty minutes each session.
On Thursday, November 11, 2010 two freshman students (Sahee Bell and Donovan Garner) were allegedly hazed. They were standing in the school parking lot after basketball practice on November 11, 2010 when a group of older students yelled 'There go some freshmen'. and started taunting them. According to the police report, the older students forced the young students into the trunk of a senior car and a 17-year-old girl drove the car around the school parking lot at about 25 miles an hour with the boys locked in the trunk. After attempting to escape, one (Bell) was dragged across the school parking lot, face against pavement with one leg stuck in the trunk. The car was then put into reserve and backed over Bell, he was treated and released from University Hospital. Four students from the school were arrested and charged with felonious assault, abduction, kidnapping and hazing. Cleveland Metropolitan School District Humanware Division sent crisis counselors along with members of the CMSD Anti-Bullying Team to counsel students and remind them of their rights and responsibilities. Parents were alarmed and appalled.".
A statement was issued by Dr. Eugene Sanders, CEO of the Cleveland Metropolitan School District, stating: the district is taking the situation at Whitney Young School for Gifted & Talented Students seriously.
The release quoted Sanders as saying, "Any student tradition that involves intimidation or results in physical or emotional harm to any student will not be tolerated. Our Crisis Teams and our Safety & Security personnel are working closely with the Cleveland Police Department to send a clear message to all students that the consequences of such behavior are severe".
On Friday, January 25, 2013 a 12-year-old male student at Whitney Young was arrested for raping a 13-year-old male classmate in a bathroom in the school. The Cleveland Police were called and are investigating the alleged rape. According to a police report, the boy accused a 12-year-old male classmate of raping him inside a bathroom.
“These two kids had went to the bathroom together and after awhile they realizes that they’ve been gone too long. Another teacher goes in the bathroom and they sees my son with his pants down around his ankles,” the victim's father said. According to the report, the 12-year-old boy denied the accusations, but he was arrested and later released to a parent.
The Cleveland Metropolitan School District released the following statement: “The staff at Whitney Young school responded quickly and appropriately to the allegation on Friday. Parents were immediately notified and authorities were contacted to examine the students and to begin a full investigation. While the Cleveland Police Department continues their investigation, school officials have remained in contact with the family, providing information on academic and emotional supports available for the student.”
Students playing on Whitney Young sports are commonly referred to as Lady Warriors (girls) and Warriors (boys). Whitney Young offers few sports compared to other high schools in Cleveland. Whitney Young is classified in the city's extramural division (until conclusion of 2011-2012 school year). Effective the 2012-2013 school year Whitney Young sports were moved in the Senate League. Whitney Young currently offers:
- Boys' football
- Boys' basketball
- Girls' basketball
- Girls' Volleyball
- Website Club
- Co-Ed Track
- Co-ed bowling
- Class officers
- Student Government
- Class representatives
- National Honor Society (sophomores, juniors and seniors only)
- Yearbook staff
- Peer mediation
- Y.E.T.T - A Christian student leadership team
- Gospel choir
- Toys for Tots
- Effective Leadership Academy (ELA) (seniors only)
- Cleveland Institute (CI) (sophomores, juniors and seniors only)
- Volunteer and community service
- Boys' Basketball
- Girls' Basketball
- Girls' Volleyball
- After-school Tutoring
- Class Representatives (Grades 7 & 8 only)
- National Junior Honor Society
- Poetry Club
- Peer Mediation
- Gospel choir
- Drama Club
- After School Tutoring
- Whitney Young also offers Special Olympics track, basketball and bowling for students in special education classes.
In October 2009 the high school Lady Warriors Volleyball team won their fourth consecutive championship game, going undefeated for three consecutive years; with Coach Paul Baker. The middle school Lady Warriors Volleyball team came in second place; with Coach Debra White.
On February 11, 2010 and February 10, 2011 Whitney Young boys' high-school basketball team lost the championship game against Ginn Academy at John Adams. March 4, 2010 Whitney Young girls' high-school basketball team lose the championship game against Cleveland School of the Arts at John F. Kennedy.
Honors and awards
|Award||Number of Awards||Year|
|"Blue Ribbon Honors School of Excellence".||1||1998|
|Ohio's Top Middle Schools List||6||2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012|
|Ohio's Top High Schools List||7||2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012|
|America's Best High Schools||5||2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012|
|Cleveland Cavaliers Head of the Class (English Teacher Debra White)||1||2010|
|Ohio School of Promise.||10||2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010|
|State Report Card Rating of "Effective"||6||2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008|
|State Report Card Rating of "Excellent||2||2009, 2012|
|State Report Card Rating of "Excellent with Distinction"||2||2010, 2011|
|Cleveland Bar Association Mock Trial||1||2012|
|Power of the Pen Writing Symposium||2||2012|
|Original Song Writing Series through The Maltz Museum Roots of American Music||1||2013|
|Season||Sport||Number of Championships||Year|
|Fall||Chess||3||2008, 2009, 2010|
|High School Volleyball||4||2006, 2007, 2008, 2009|
|Winter||High School Basketball, Boys'||2||2006, 2007|
|Middle School Basketball, Boys'||3||2006, 2007, 2008|
|Spring||High School Basketball, Girls||6||2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012|
|Track||3||2009, 2010, 2012|
Alumnus / notable people
|Blaine Mickens||Class of 2008||Entrepreneur|
|Derric Studamire||Class of 2008||Entrepreneur|
|Educator||Position(s)||Years at WMY||Note|
|Lena Pogrebinsky||High School Mathematics Teacher (Algebra 1, Pre-Calculus & A.P. Statistics)||August 2010 - January 2011||Wife of painter Alexander Pogrebinsky|
- "Destination Graduation". CMSD. Retrieved September 2010.
- Ohio High School Conference Membership Retrieved 02 Oct 2012
- "Blaine Mickens". Plain Dealer Newspaper. Retrieved August 2010.
- Whitney Young 100% Retrieved May 2010.
- "America's Best High Schools". US News & World Report. Retrieved May 2010.
- "Cleveland schools celebrates". Cleveland Plain Delaer. Retrieved August 27, 2010.
- "Ohio Schools of Promise". Ohio Department of Education. Retrieved November 14, 2010.
- Rotsky Foundation for Mentors Scholastic Participation
- CMSD Destination Graduation 2009-2010 Retrieved May 2010.
- Transformation Plan Webcast. 2010 Retrieved May 2010.
- Transformation Address. 2010 Retrieved May 2010.
- Transformation Meetings. 2010 Retrieved May 2010.
- "2009-2010 Academic Report Cards". Channel 5 News. Retrieved August 27, 2010.
- "Cleveland is Improving". Fox 8 News. Retrieved August 27, 2010.
- "Effctive Leadership Academy". Effective Leadership Academy. Retrieved November 15, 2010.
- "Teens arrested in hazing incident at Cleveland's Whitney Young Academy". 19 Action News. Retrieved November 15, 2010.
- Whitney Young School. 2009. Retrieved May 2010.
- US Department of Education. Retrieved May 2010.
- US News & World Report. Retrieved May 2010.
- Ohio Department of Education 2002. Retrieved May 2010.
- Ohio Department of Education. 2003. Retrieved May 2010.
- City Data. 2007. Retrieved May 2010.
- Ohio Department of Education. 2009. Retrieved May 2010.
- Ohio Department of Education. 2009. Retrieved August 27, 2010.
- "Derric Studamire". ECity Cleveland. Retrieved March 2011.
- Whitney M. Young Gifted & Talented Leadership Academy Official Site
- Whitney M. Young Gifted & Talented Leadership Academy CMSD Site
- Cleveland Metropolitan School District
- Ohio Department of Education
- School 2002-2003 State of Ohio Report Card
- School 2006-2007 State Test Results
- School 2007-2008 State Test Results
- School 2007-2008 Performance Rate
- School 2008-2009 State of Ohio Report Card
- Rotsky Foundation