The Urban Assembly was founded in the 1990s by builder Richard Kahan. Under Kahan's leadership, the Urban Assembly partnered with the New York City Department of Education and New Visions for Public Schools to create the Urban Assembly Bronx School for Law, Government, and Justice in 1997.
Over the next decade, the UA opened more than 20 small, career-themed public schools and worked with hundreds of public, private, and non-profit sector partners to enhance educational opportunities for public school students and close the opportunity gap for students of color and students from low-income backgrounds.
Today, the Urban Assembly is a school support agency that develops academic, social-emotional, and postsecondary readiness learning tools and programs that enhance student growth and school performance. As an Affinity partner of the NYC DOE, the Urban Assembly has a network of 23 high-performing schools that outperform other schools citywide, with a higher graduation rate (91% vs 81%).
As a model provider of school support services, the Urban Assembly has influenced citywide education programs and initiatives in New York City and partnered with schools and districts in California, Wisconsin, New Jersey, Tennessee, Texas, and Washington D.C.