Tag Archives: The Baccalaureate School for Global Education

Students study local street to make Jackson Heights safer


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Photos by Noah Beadle

Groups of “kid engineers” came together over the weekend to try to understand how to make Queens safer, one street at a time.

The advocacy organization, Make Queens Safer, hosted a Safer, Greener Streets Fair and Bike Bonanza on Saturday at Travers Park in Jackson Heights to raise awareness and allow visitors to learn more about street safety while also getting the chance to participate in activities.

One of the interactive events, called the Kid Engineers Traffic Study, allowed students from I.S. 230, P.S. 69, P.S. 212, P.S. 280, the Academy for Careers in Television and Film, the Baccalaureate School for Global Education, McClancy High School and Voice Charter School to assist in documenting traffic conditions down 34th Avenue between 74th and 80th streets.

The study was chosen for that particular stretch in Jackson Heights, which has a speed limit of 30 mph, because it is parallel to Northern Boulevard, is a major bike route and is near three schools and several parks, according to organizers.

“Providing the tools and knowledge on how to safely navigate the streets of our neighborhoods can help reduce accidents and improve the quality of life for all members of our community,” said Councilman Daniel Dromm, who joined the students as they conducted the study.

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The students measured traffic speeds using radar guns westbound on 34th Avenue at 75th Street and eastbound on the avenue at 79th Street.

According to the students’ data, with more than 100 measurements taken, about 17 percent of the vehicles traveled 31 mph or faster at 75th Street, while 7 percent exceeded the limit at 79th Street.

Traffic was light compared to weekday traffic, according to organizers. Other notes taken at the sites included vehicles running red lights.

The final field study involved intersection safety observations.

The “kid engineers” examined driver, pedestrian and cyclist behaviors at 76th, 77th, and 80th streets along 34th Avenue.

Students collected data on vehicles stopping in crosswalks while ignoring painted stop lines, drivers using hand-held cellphones, and pedestrians talking on cellphones as they crossed the intersections. During this time the students also talked about ways pedestrians should stay safe while crossing the streets.

Other information collected involved two near collisions, vehicles turning without signals, cyclists running red lights and pedestrians walking out into the street before checking for traffic.

For the full data collected by the Kid Engineers Traffic Study, click here.

Throughout the day other events of the a Safer, Greener Streets Fair and Bike Bonanza included a Learn to Ride Class hosted by Bike New York, a helmet giveaway from the Department of Transportation and free youth bike repair by Recycle a Bicycle and Bike Yard.

“Our family spent the entire day talking about safety – bike safety and street safety,” said Veronica Marino, whose 11-year-old daughter participated in the events. “So many times it takes a tragedy to get people talking about these things.”

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Top honors for Queens high schools


| mpantelidis@queenscourier.com

QHSSYC School Picture

One Long Island City high school was recently named New York’s “valedictorian.”

The Baccalaureate School for Global Education (BSGE), located at 34-12 36th Avenue in L.I.C., is the top high school in the state based on rankings released by the U.S. News and World Report. BSGE was also ranked as the 21st best high school in the country out of a pool of roughly 22,000 schools nationwide.

BSGE was awarded a gold medal in the rankings and had a perfect score of 100 in the college readiness index. The high school also boasts a 3.6 score out of 4 in average proficiency in both math and English and a 13 to one student to teacher ratio.
Repeated attempts to contact BSGE’s principal went unreturned.

Other borough schools receiving high grades were the Queens High School for the Sciences at York College in Jamaica, which was seventh in the state and 52nd nationally with an 87 in the college readiness index, and Townsend Harris High School in Flushing, ranking eighth and 53rd respectively and earning an 86.8 mark. Queens High School for the Sciences at York College had 4.0 math and 3.8 English proficiency scores, while Townsend Harris received a perfect 4.0 in both categories. Both schools also received gold medals.

David Marmor, principal of Queens High School for the Sciences at York College, says his school’s rigorous curricula, numerous Advanced Placement and college courses and small, nurturing environment are among the factors that contributed to its high ranking.

“We are very, very proud and happy,” Marmor said. “Our kids and our staff have worked very hard. This is our 10th anniversary coming up this year, so for a small school with only a 10-year history, we are very excited to be among the top schools in the country.”