YES Prep Public Schools

Our Model

YES Prep is an open-enrollment public charter school system serving grade-school students in Houston’s most underserved communities.

Since we opened our doors in 1998, YES Prep has continuously redefined possible for students, families and the public education system at large. Today, with 24 schools and one Alternative Education Program (Thrive) in operation, serving over 18,000 students throughout Houston, YES Prep is living proof that different outcomes are possible when students from low-income communities are given access to high-quality educational opportunities.

Small and Integrated Grade Schools

YES Prep operates small, integrated elementary and secondary schools that enable our teachers and school leaders to build transformative relationships with students. By creating a family-oriented culture on every school, our students feel valued and supported throughout their elementary school and secondary school careers.

Rigorous Academic Curriculum and Assessment

From day one, our students are held to higher academic standards than students in traditional public schools across the country. YES Prep uses the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills standards (TEKS) as a floor, not a ceiling, when setting the bar for student achievement. Students are assessed multiple times during the school year to identify gaps in learning, and interventions are implemented based on the results. Additionally, all of our students are required to take the SAT or ACT exam and at least one Advanced Placement (AP) course in high school. 

Student Interventions

In order to ensure that every student is college-ready by the end of 12th grade, YES Prep requires all students to attend an extended school day and school year. Because most of our sixth graders come to YES Prep performing below grade-level, additional time during the school day is dedicated to strategic interventions in order to guarantee that students are able to meet academic standards. 

Enrichment Opportunities

YES Prep students have access to a variety of life-changing extracurricular activities that enhance their middle and high school experiences.

  • Spring Trip. Annual spring trips give most students their first opportunity to travel outside of Houston and visit colleges around the country. By graduation, on average, YES Prep students have visited 20 schools.  
  • Service Opportunities. Service has been an important pillar of our model since 1998. At most of our schools, students have the opportunity to volunteer and give back to their communities through Saturday service days and unique projects.
  • Summer Programming. Students that are interested in participating in rigorous academic summer programming have the opportunity to apply for Duke Tip, Breakthrough Houston, and a variety of study abroad options. These programs actively recruit our students, and our staff is continuously seeking out the best and most unique summer opportunities available
Personalized College Counseling & Support Through College

Over the past 20 years, YES Prep has developed one of the most innovative college counseling programs in the country with one focus – college graduation. Our unwavering commitment to this goal originally began in sixth grade but now begins at pre-Kindergarten and continues on well after students leave YES Prep. Our alumni receive ongoing support throughout college to ensure they persist and earn a degree. Visit our College Initiatives page to learn more.