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About Harlem Gems

Harlem Gems preschools prepare our youngest scholars to succeed in K-12 and beyond by building a strong academic foundation and starting them on the path to college and career. Scholars as young as three are heard in our classrooms sharing their college hopes and dreams.

Program Highlights

  • Participants can attend one of two locations at 60 West 117 Street and 381 Lenox Avenue.
  • With a 5:1 child-to-staff ratio, all participants receive the individualized instruction and one-on-one teacher attention that is vital for child development at this age.
  • Participants enjoy as extended day and year program, operating 8 AM-5 PM five days a week, all year long.


Percent of Pre-K Gems who tested school-ready in 2017


Gems’ child-to-teacher ratio


Our curriculum is centered on literacy, math, and social emotional learning (SEL). Our scholars gain the academic foundation they need in order to thrive in their K-12 education, as well as SEL that fosters healthy interpersonal skills, resilience, and productive stress coping mechanisms. Additionally, scholars participate in fun fitness activities and learn the basics of health and nutrition.

We use the following screening and assessment tools to assess scholar development and progress towards learning milestones and, as needed, provide tailored interventions:

  • Brigance Early Childhood Developmental Screening and Assessment Tool, which provides a snapshot of a child’s development and assesses school readiness.
  • Bracken Concept Scale-Revised, which is used to determine school readiness.

We use Creative Curriculum, Fundations, and Writing Workshop to teach the building blocks of language, reading, comprehension, grammar, and writing.

Five preschool students sit in a circle, flipping books, and practicing learning to read

With Eureka Math, students learn math through stories to gain the foundational skills to think about numbers in real-world relevant ways.

A teacher sits with preschool students surrounding her and giggling as she reads to them

Second Step and Emotionally Responsive Classroom infuse learning with SEL skills and provide teachers tools that help children learn emotional regulation and healthy coping mechanisms.

Two preschool students site side by side, smiling and reading together

Parent and Family Engagement

When families are engaged in their scholar’s education, they experience better learning outcomes. We offer families numerous opportunities and events to get involved, remain up-to-date on their child’s development, and become familiar with ways to create an environment of learning in their homes.

Opportunities and events include:

  • Parent workshops that cover curriculum, discipline, and child development
  • The Challenging Parenting Practices series, which reminds parents they are their child’s first teacher and instills skills to strengthen parenting
  • Parent-teacher conferences
  • Home visits
  • Book-a-Night to encourage literacy experiences at home
  • Connections to other HCZ youth and health & community programs


To enroll, call or stop by one of our two Harlem Gems sites: Harlem Gems North (646 539-5898 / 381 Lenox Avenue) or Harlem Gems South (60 West 117th Street / 212-369-3577).



Promise Academy® Elementary Schools

At HCZ Promise Academy Charter Schools, we do whatever it takes to get our scholars to and through college