York Preparatory School

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York Preparatory School
York prep School Official Logo.jpg
40 West 68th Street

New York City (Manhattan)
New York

United States
Coordinates40°46′27″N 73°58′46″W / 40.774212°N 73.97937°W / 40.774212; -73.97937Coordinates: 40°46′27″N 73°58′46″W / 40.774212°N 73.97937°W / 40.774212; -73.97937
TypePrivate, Day, College-prep
FounderRonald Stewart and Jayme Stewart
PrincipalJeremy Clark
HeadmasterRonald Stewart
GradesSixth grade12
Student to teacher ratio5:1
Color(s)Blue and Yellow
MascotYork Prep Panthers
AccreditationMiddle States Association of Colleges and Schools
NewspaperThe Paw
YearbookThe Legend
40 West 68th Street

York Preparatory School commonly referred to as York Prep School, is an independent, university-preparatory school in the Upper West Side area of Manhattan, New York City, near Lincoln Square.[1]

The coeducational school provides instruction to approximately 355 students between 6th and 12th grades.[1] The student:teacher ratio is 5:1.[2]

York Prep is approved by the New York State Board of Regents and accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.[3]

As of the 2017-2018 school year, tuition is $48,650 per year for middle school students and $48,800 for high school students. The school also offers "Jumpstart" for an extra $23,000.[4]


Founded by Ronald and Jayme Stewart, York Prep opened its doors in September 1969 to 158 students in grades 6-12 and by 1972 had 212 students.[5] The school is family-based, with founder Ronald Stewart serving as headmaster and his wife Jayme Stewart as director of college guidance. Jayme Stewart, who has shared college entry tips with CNN,[6] is also the author of a 1991 book, How to Get into the College of Your Choice: And How to Finance It.[7]


The curriculum provides a foundation in the traditional core subjects of a liberal arts education—English, mathematics, social studies, science, and foreign language. In addition, students can choose from a wide range of specialized electives.[8]

The school uses a system called “tracking,” which places students in one of several ability groups available in every subject area. This allows students to work at an advanced pace through Honors courses and the Scholars Program, in subjects in which they excel, and at a moderate pace in those subjects where they need more guidance.[9]

The York Prep Scholars Program is a three-year sequence which provides a more challenging curriculum for York's most academically able students.[9] Units on such topics as “Neuroscience,” “Italian Renaissance Art,” “Statistics,” and “Shakespeare Performance” are presented independently in mini-courses taught by members of the faculty who focus on their particular intellectual passions and specialties.[10] In 2014, the program was expanded to include “Junior Scholars” (for 6th and 7th grades) and "Pre-Scholars" (for 8th and 9th graders) as well.

York Prep offers a Jump Start Program at supplemental cost to provide assistance to students with different learning styles and learning disabilities.[11] The program offers participants two weekly one-on-one 40 minutes sessions with their assigned Jump Start teachers, morning check-ins with their teachers, and supervised group study sessions after school.[12]

Sports and activities[edit]

York Prep offers the following sports:[13]

Boys' Varsity Soccer Boys’ Varsity Basketball
Girls' Varsity Soccer Girls’ Varsity Basketball
Middle School Soccer Middle School Basketball
Girls’ Varsity Volleyball Boys’ Junior Varsity Basketball
Girls' Junior Varsity Volleyball Girls’ Varsity Softball
Boys’ Varsity Volleyball Indoor Varsity Track & Field
Girls’ Middle School Volleyball Varsity Track & Field
Co-ed Varsity Golf Middle School Track & Field
Boys’ Varsity Baseball Varsity Cross Country
Middle School Baseball Middle School Cross Country

Clubs and activities include Beekeepers Society, Book Club (Upper School and Lower School), Broadway Club, Chess Backgammon and Games Club, CPR/AED Club, Dance and Zumba Club, D.E.A.R. Club, Doctor Who Club, Environmental & Gardeners Club, Explorers Club, Fitness Club, French Cinema Club, Gay/Straight Alliance, Genesis Club, Glee Club/Rock Band, Jewish Heritage Club, Laboratory Assistance Club, Madden Club, Math Competition Club, Model United Nations, Multicultural Club, Open Studio Club, Opera Club, Out Loud Club, Peer Tutoring Program, Prom Committee, Same Sky On-Campus, School Production/Drama Club, Science Olympians Club, Set Builders Club, Spanish Club, Student Government Organization, Ukulele Club, Tennis Club, Women in The Arab World Club, Yearbook, Young Doctors Club, WYRK, York Prep's in-house television station.[14]

Dress code[edit]

York Prep's dress code is enforced Monday through Friday. On Friday casual dress was previously allowed. The dress code consists of white or navy polo shirts with the york prep logo and khaki or navy pants. Girls may wear skirts, skorts or pants.

Grading system[edit]

York Prep operates on a semester system. Numerical grades begin in grade 6 and run through grade 12. A grade point average of 85 or above constitutes being on the Honor Roll. While a grade point average of 90 or above constitutes being on the Headmasters List. The lowest failing grade is a 59%, while the highest failing grade is a 65%. Parents and students receive weekly grades and progress updates via an online grading book called Canvas, a component of the York Prep website. Each family signs in with a unique username and password to access their student's grades and progress in all academic subjects. Students receive quarterly grades four times per year.


The school, which then housed 250 students, made news in 1997 when it expanded in an unusual transaction, trading property with Ramaz School.[15] Ramaz purchased a new building for York Prep at 68th Street and traded that for the existing school at East 85th Street.

The property at West 68th Street is the original home of the Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute. The new school site—a seven-level granite building-has three science laboratories, three technology centers, a library, performance and art studios and a sprung hardwood floor gymnasium, which has a fitness center, weight room and locker room facilities and a roof for beekeeping.

The classrooms are all carpeted and equipped with climate-control. All classrooms are equipped with smart technology including interactive whiteboards and Wi-Fi. Also, all 8th graders are provided with Chrome Books which are added to tuition. Students and staff members all have personal computer accounts, and all staff members have school e-mail addresses. In addition, all homeroom classrooms play the weekly episode of the schools in-house television series: WYRK.

Notable alumni[edit]

In news and popular culture[edit]

  • The front of the school was featured in the film "Elf" starring Will Ferrell.
  • The school and several of its students were featured in the series Ice-T's Rap School, a 6-part reality show aired on VH1 in 2006 where the rapper introduced eight of York Prep's students to rap and rap culture.[24]
  • York Prep is mentioned in Season 1 Episode 3 of ABC's Castle "Hedge Fund Homeboys". York Prep students are referred to as "Yorkies" and mentioned as wearing uniforms.
  • York Prep is mentioned in Season 3 Episode 9 of the CW's Gossip Girl "They shoot the Humphries, Don't They?". The school "York" being referred to as "practically public school".
  • Director of College Guidance Jayme Stewart was featured in an article in U.S. News and World Report on volunteer opportunities for high school students


  1. ^ a b "York Preparatory School". New York State Association of Independent Schools. Retrieved 2008-09-03.
  2. ^ "Best New York City Private & Selective Public high Schools". New York: The Princeton Review, Inc. 2008: 194. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  3. ^ "Directory of Members". Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools: Commission on Secondary Schools. Archived from the original on June 10, 2011. Retrieved 2008-09-19. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  4. ^ "Tuition & Financial Aid". York Preparatory School. Retrieved 25 Sep 2017. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  5. ^ Cushman, Sandi (1972-06-11). "A Private School Should Fit Your Child's Needs". New York: Sunday News. p. 128.
  6. ^ Schurenberg, Eric; Alexander, Jan (1989-05-01). "The agony of college admissions". CNN. Archived from the original on October 9, 2009. Retrieved 2009-09-03. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  7. ^ Melvin, Tessa (1994-11-06). "If you're thinking of living in". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-09-03.
  8. ^ "Learning at York Prep". York Prep School. Retrieved 2010-10-12.
  9. ^ a b Frost, Emily (2015-01-11). "York Prep principal strives for inclusive, family atmosphere". DNAinfo. Retrieved 2019-09-05.
  10. ^ "Scholars Program". York Prep School. Retrieved 2012-09-26.
  11. ^ "Best New York City Private & Selective Public high Schools". New York: The Princeton Review, Inc. 2008: 193. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  12. ^ "Jump Start". York Prep School. Retrieved 2013-08-30.
  13. ^ "Sports News". York Prep School. Retrieved 2012-09-26.
  14. ^ "Clubs and Activities" (PDF). York Prep School. Retrieved 2014-12-18.
  15. ^ Rothstein, Mervyn (1997-05-21). "School plans to build at another's site". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-09-03.
  16. ^ Maguire, Madeline. "Liv Tyler". Ok! Online. Archived from the original on 2008-07-23. Retrieved 2008-09-16.
  17. ^ a b c Anderson, Jenny (2012-05-27). "For-profit private school is calling its own shots". The New York Times. Retrieved 2019-09-04.
  18. ^ Tavernise, Sabrina (2005-08-30). "Drugs send Chambers, '86 killer, back to jail". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-09-03. At 19, Mr. Chambers, who had attended the prestigious York Preparatory School, became a symbol of depraved youth on the affluent Upper East Side.
  19. ^ Bernard, Sarah (2000-10-09). "Jungle Boy". New York Magazine. Retrieved 2008-09-18.
  20. ^ Fleming, Colin (October 2007). "Spanish Harlem's Hero". Smithsonian Magazine. Retrieved 2008-09-16.
  21. ^ "Academy of Television Arts & Sciences". Retrieved 2014-02-04.
  22. ^ "York Prep Alumni Community". York Prep School. Archived from the original on February 21, 2014. Retrieved 2014-02-04. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  23. ^ Bernstein, Jacob (2012-12-05). "Michael Avedon Follows in His Grandfather's Footsteps". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2016-03-30.
  24. ^ Buckman, Adam (2006-10-17). "Gift rapped". New York Post. Archived from the original on October 17, 2007. Retrieved 2008-09-03. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)