Friends of Island Academy


Friends of Island Academy was founded in 1990 to anchor and support adolescents newly released from jail in New York City. The concept for Friends developed in the late 1980’s at the alternative high school located on Rikers Island (known then as Island Academy). The organization was rooted in collaboration between New York City Department of Education staff on Rikers, social service staff and community advocates who wanted to address the recidivism rates, untapped potential and disproportionate minority representation among thousands of adolescents who attended high school on Rikers Island each year.