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This case study examines the efforts of a recently established public charter school in a diverse urban neighborhood in Brooklyn to create a school guided by the foundational principles of the Bank Street approach. The efforts to infuse the practice and approach of the school with a progressive ethos is set against the prevailing trend to create schools that deploy highly systematic and didactic pedagogies. The case study begins by describing the rich learning that transpired during a study of the Fort Greene neighborhood undertaken by Community Roots first graders. The study explores the interactions between people in the community and locates the Rosewood unit as an integrated social studies unit. The case study then turns to how Community Roots charter school uses an integrated co-teaching model (ICT) that involves placing a general education teacher and a special education teacher in each classroom. This model enables the school to strive toward inclusion and provides the teachers with opportunity to structure learning in the classroom in ways that enhance the capacity of teachers to meet with students, individualize learning, and engage in an approach to learning grounded in high levels of interaction. The case study concludes with a focus on Community Roots’ intentional efforts to cultivate a sense of community among the many diverse families at the school and within the school’s neighborhood.

Publication Date



Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education (SCOPE)


Stanford, CA:


bank street college, first grade, integrated social studies curriculum, developmental interaction approach


Curriculum and Instruction | Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research | Educational Methods | Elementary Education | Social and Philosophical Foundations of Education


Teaching for a Changing World: The Graduates of Bank Street College of Education [Case Study]

Printed with permission, Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education.

A School Growing Roots: The Bank Street Developmental-Interaction Approach at Community Roots Charter School