Integration Charter Schools (ICS) is dedicated to providing innovative pathways to college that fully integrate students living with emotional challenges and others with special needs. In building a family of associated schools that share this common mission, ICS strives to fill gaps in public education. When fully realized, ICS, in conjunction with local public schools, will provide Staten Island parents of special needs children with an array of options which is richer than that enjoyed by any other community in the United States.

ICS’s John W. Lavelle Preparatory Charter School (Lavelle Prep), Staten Island’s first charter school, was established in 2009 with the mission of fully integrating students experiencing emotional challenges with a rigorous college-preparatory education that equips and empowers students to go to college and succeed in life. Now in its 12th year of serving students and their families, the school serves students in grades K – 12 with 40% of the admission seats are reserved for students with an IEP.

In 2015, Lavelle Prep spearheaded the development and authorization of New Ventures Charter School, a transfer high school that shares Lavelle Prep’s commitment to leveling the playing field for students living with emotional challenges. New Ventures promotes college and career readiness for overage and under-credited, as risk youth, aged 16-21 living on Staten Island, enabling them to graduate from high school prepared to excel in their academic, professional and personal lives.

ICS’s third school, The Lois and Richard Nicotra Early College Charter School (Nicotra Charter) is designed to provide an innovative pathway to college graduation for all students including those living with emotional challenges as well as those with other disabilities in all classes and activities. This exciting program provides an accelerated pathway to higher education which enables students to graduate from high school with a Regents diploma and credits from St. John’s.

Our fourth school, Richmond Preparatory Charter School, opened this September and is designed to fully integrate students, on the autism spectrum as well as those living with other disabilities in all classes and activities. We believe that the integration of students will empower them to break down barriers through the power of their daily academic and social experience, enabling them to develop the academic skills, emotional fluency, and confidence required to be successful students today and thoughtful, open-minded leaders tomorrow. In fostering both the academic and emotional growth of all students, RPCS will serve as an innovative educational model. 

What is a charter school?

Tuition-free and independently run, a charter school offers parents a choice for their child’s educational journey. Student-to-teacher ratios are stronger, with more individualized attention to each student’s needs, progress and success.

Every charter school is publicly funded and held to the same standards of testing, attendance and special education as any other school in New York State. The combination of freedom and accountability for success allows charter schools to try new approaches, respond to community needs and put student learning first.

Charter schools are bound to the terms of a contract, or “charter,” that lays out a school’s mission, academic goals, fiscal guidelines and accountability requirements.

Enrollment is open to all students through a lottery system.

Integration Charter Schools core values