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Directing Black and Latino youth toward higher achievement

In New York, black students make up…

27% of all public high school students


but less than 5% in specialized high schools.


Number of black students admitted to NYC specialized high schools in 2018.

2018 resulst

“It is not enough to simply prepare our students to pass a test to get into specialized high schools. Providing them with ongoing academic and social support is equally important to them as they manage the transition into these higher-performing high schools and succeed there.”

                                                                                                                                                 Allison Shillingford, Founder


of NTMA students that took the SHSAT accepted into a specialized high school


of black students that took the SHSAT accepted into a specialized high school


of all students that took the SHSAT accepted into a specialized high school


Classes are held on Saturdays during the school year and for six weeks in the summer. Students work on verbal skills, math problem solving, and test-taking strategies. 

Early Start

NTMA selects academically gifted Black and Latinx students in their seventh-grade year. By identifying their strengths and targeting any challenges early on, our program effectively prepares them for the Specialized High School Admissions Test.


NTMA connects students with successful  alumni of specialized high schools and leaders in their communities.


NTMA encourages our students to engage in community service. One way our students give back is by volunteering with Little Sun People, a Brooklyn pre-school.

Student Testimonials


8th Grade

When I went to take the test I wasn’t nervous and sweating and some kids were shaking.  I was calm because the questions were familiar.  I was well prepared.



8th Grade

Not only did NTMA prepare me for the SHSAT but it also helped me raise my state scores and made me more confident in my classes at school.



8th Grade

I like that there are other students like me, working together to get into a specialized high school.  I feel like I have the community I need to achieve. 



8th Grade

I am so grateful for all that NTMA has given me.  I am so happy they will be with me through high school.  Looking forward to hopefully attend Brooklyn Tech.