Frequently Asked Questions

Who can apply?

ULA is an inclusive program for young people of all gender expressions, different learning styles, IEP’s (individual educational plans), races, and different academic standing. Any student that attends the participating schools can apply to ULA. Please see our requirements document in the Applications page.


How do I apply?

ULA is a year-long after school program therefore the application process should be completed either during the summer or within the first month of school. The application particular to your school can be found on the ULA website, on file with your site coordinator, or at your school’s administrative office.


What if I can’t attend all activity days?

ULA encourages its students to attend all program days in order to learn and grow the most from the program. Experience has shown that the students that participated on a constant basis or did not miss any program days were able to develop the most in their leadership, knowledge, and understanding.

However, ULA understands that sometimes unavoidable circumstances may arise. In this case, pardons are provided on an individual basis by the ULA staff for the students.

Students are required to notify ULA staff know with a note if they will be missing a program day ahead of time unless circumstances make this impossible. A max of two days can be missed.

For students at J.H.S. 78 students must attend a minimum of 3 out of 5 program days. For specialized programs like the Kaplan Learning Test Prep you are required to attend all program days.

Does this program cost me (the parent) money?

ULA is being provided as an after-school program from Girls For Gender Equity which is a non-profit organization. Therefore, no,  the program will not cost you, the parent, nor the student any money.


What activities will my child be doing?

There is a list of activities and a clear description of the program overview on the website at Urban Leaders Academy. Please be aware that activities available vary from school to school. For a more detailed list specific to your school please contact the ULA staff within your school.


Will my child be supervised? By whom?

Your children will always have supervision by a ULA staff member and other school employees participating in the program. We have a 10:1 student to staff ratio. Class size is usually 25 students or less.

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What days and times does the program run?

ULA has a different schedule for each school. Please refer to the schedule below for the appropriate school days and times:

  • J.H.S. 78 – Roy H. Mann Middle School
    • Monday – Friday 2:10pm – 5:30pm
  • I.S. 14 – Shell Bank Middle School
    • Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday 2:05pm – 4:30pm


Are there field trips? If so, who provides transportation?

Yes, there are. We love to offer enriching field trips in the immediate school community and in NYC. Community activities are usually in walking distance (need permission to walk in a 10 block radius of school). Outside of community we use NYC transportation and metro cards are provided.


How can I be sure my child will be engaging in age-appropriate activities and learning materials?

We ask permission before hand. Curriculum is designed around youth development model, when we use outside entities their curriculum is pre-approved. Anything we feel is questionable (sex ed, anatomy, puberty, etc) ULA will ask permission from parents.


How is social activism topics incorporated into the curriculum?

Our curriculum is social-justice based highlighting current events, going on in the community and society. We teach social justice through a gender-race-class lens and encourage students to think critically about systems they interact with on a daily basis.


Will ULA impact my student’s academics?

While ULA is not an academic-focused program, the ULA curriculum is aligned with Common Core Standards (add a link) and is designed to enrich school-day learning. Students have many opportunities to engage in activities that support their academic success such as debate, spoken word, Kaplan Learning Test Prep, team-based activities, project-based activities, media literacy, etc.


How will my student be involved within the community?

ULA’s social justice curriculum includes a service-learning component. Please see our program overview here: (link). There are community service opportunities and there are a lot of student-led community organizing.


How does ULA handle conflict that may arise during programming?

ULA has a comprehensive behavior management system where students are asked to reflect and are supported to transform their behavior. Parents are notified in extreme cases. ULA staff is trained in transformative and restorative justice which enables them to address conflict in a manner which is youth-centered and focused on development rather than punishment.