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A vital dimension of New Roots Charter School is our connection with our community.

New Roots students engage in field studies and community service projects, internships and apprenticeships, and community-based capstone projects. Our Tuesday and Thursday schedules have been designed with the block scheduling and flexibility that allows teachers ample opportunity to schedule labs and activities in the field. A diverse group of community partners provide New Roots students with extensive internship and community service opportunities.

A core concept explored across the disciplines through

"We are not passengers, we are crew." - Kurt Hahn, Founder, Outward Bound

Advisory Groups or "crews" are small groups of students who meet daily with a faculty mentor for the purposes of providing academic and social support, building school community, integrating academics with service learning, and guiding each student through their development of an online graduation portfolio.

Students are supported in learning in teamwork and consensus-based decision-making skills, consciously building community across the divides of gender, age, race, and class.

Attention Caregivers: New Roots Charter School offers free meals to all students. All students enrolled at New Roots are eligible to receive a healthy breakfast and lunch at school at no charge to your household.


School lunches have never been so fresh and delicious!

New Roots School is part of a growing Farm to School movement across the country connecting school lunch programs with local farms.  Not only do these relationships bring healthy food into the cafeteria, they also help youth see the impact that food systems have on communities.

Allyn Rosenbaum, New Roots Farm to School

The New Roots Sustainable Agriculture & Food Certificate Program provides in-depth knowledge of social, scientific, and cultural factors about how we bring food to our table.

Through internships, electives, special projects, and events, students learn skills that few other schools in the country currently offer high school students. Students also have a range of culinary arts experiences focusing on the connections between the farm, the food, and the table.

Required electives for the certificate include Café, Culinary Arts, Foodshed Studies, Sustainable Entrepreneurship, and Ecological

Music Course Offerings

Rock Band

Course Concentration: Rock Band is a performance ensemble focusing on ensemble performance skills,  popular music literature, arranging for a rock ensemble, live sound  reinforcement, studio recording, and marketing and promotions related to booking and management.

Steel Drum Ensemble

Course Concentration: Ensemble performance skills and pedagogy related to world percussion with a focus on the Steel Band tradition of Trinidad and Tobago.


Vocal Ensemble

The New Roots Vocal Ensemble performs multicultural and freedom songs.

Course Concentration: Current

The New Roots Charter School Honors Program empowers its students to become leaders within the academic environment and community. Upon completing the requirements, enrolled students will embody and spread the mission and vision of New Roots to fellow students and community members.

How do I get into the Honors Program?

This program is available to any student who wants greater academic challenge and new opportunities. Students must fill out an application, provide two references, and write a letter expressing why they are interested in joining the New Roots Charter School Honors Program.

All New Roots students will graduate with college credits from Tompkins Cortland Community College (TC3), granted for concurrent enrollment courses taken in the junior and senior years.

Concurrent enrollment classes are classes which grant both high school and college credit, without the cost of college tuition. Several junior and senior year classes will use syllabi approved by TC3's CollegeNow program. Students will also be able to take additional online and regular TC3 offerings related to areas of specialization and interest.

At New Roots, the academic challenge is applying what you know and can do to make your vision for yourself and your world a reality.

Students at New Roots School will:

  • Graduate in four years with a Regents diploma and college credits 

  • Take a core curriculum sequence of four years of science, math, Social Studies and English featuring interdisciplinary connections, problem-based learning and a global perspective

  • Consider urban spaces, college campuses, natural lands, EcoVillage at Ithaca, and local farms their classroom, discovering links between our region and global locales

  • Apply