Manhattan Center for Science and Mathematics

Coordinates: 40°47′39″N 73°55′59″W / 40.79417°N 73.93306°W / 40.79417; -73.93306

Manhattan Center for Science and Mathematics

Eastern side
280 Pleasant Avenue
New York, NY 10029
United States
Type Public, Secondary
Established 1982
School district 4
Oversight NYC DOE
Principal David Jimenez (2007)
Grades 9-12
Number of students 1656
Color(s) Blue and White
Mascot Ram
Wartime first aid class, when this was Benjamin Franklin High

Manhattan Center for Science and Mathematics (abbreviated as MCSM) is a public high school in New York City, at East 116th Street between Pleasant Avenue and FDR Drive in the East Harlem neighborhood in the northeastern part of the borough of Manhattan.


The precursor of MCSM in the same building, Benjamin Franklin High School opened in 1943 and was sited at 200 Pleasant Avenue, between 114th Street and 116th Street.[1] A long-time principal there was pioneering educational theorist Leonard Covello, the city's first Italian-American principal.[2] Frank Sinatra sang "Aren't You Glad You're You," to quell racial tensions after a riot between African-American and Italian-American students. Future jazz saxophonist Sonny Rollins said that the concert changed his life.[1]

The New York City Board of Education shuttered the school in June 1982 for performance issues and converted the building into a four-year high school, the Manhattan Center for Science and Mathematics,[3] and a grade 6-8 middle school, the Isaac Newton Middle School for Math and Science, effective September 1982. It later was renamed Manhattan Center is a four-year high school which provides students with a rigorous curriculum that emphasizes mathematics and science.


Like all New York City high schools, admission is by application. Admission priority for Manhattan Center is given first to students attending the Isaac Newton Junior High School, which shares the campus with Manhattan Center; second to students residing in District 4; and then to other residents city-wide.

The academic performance of this school is extremely high, as measured by New York State Regents Examinations scores, scholarship rates and a 95% graduation rate. MCSM is consistently one of the highest performing schools in the State of New York. In 2007, David Jimenez became the Principal. In 2009, MCSM graduated 97% of its students. Students graduating from Manhattan Center have attended top-notch colleges, including Ivy League colleges.

The curriculum includes Advanced Placement courses and special programs, and research and internship opportunities.[4] The school offers AP World History, AP US History, AP English Language and Composition, AP English Language and Literature, AP Calculus AB, AP Calculus BC, AP Physics B, AP Physics C, AP Biology, AP Chemistry, AP Statistics, AP Computer Science and AP Spanish Language and Literature. There are several honors and accelerated courses.

Manhattan Center partners with institutions of higher education, such as New York University, Columbia University, Cornell and CUNY, to offer courses in science, mathematics and humanities. Through these partnerships and Mount Sinai Hospital, Metropolitan Hospital Center General Electric, Sponsors for Educational Opportunity, American Globe Theatre, and Manhattan Theatre Club there is a wide range of opportunities for one-on-one mentoring, internship experiences, academic enrichment and summer programs. They also provide support services, and a variety of sports, clubs and leadership activities for students.

Notable alumni

Franklin High:



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