The students waitlisted for kindergarten at Manhattan schools PS 3 and PS 41 will be able to register at one of these schools for class this September -- but the pre-K students promised seats for next year will not be able to attend the schools. PS 3 and PS 41 have been directed to close their pre-K classes to make room for more kindergarten students.
"We canceled our pre-K," said a staff member at PS 41, who asked not to be named. "It was a decision made with the DOE...We had no choice. The space is so limited, and the kindergarten kids needed space. That's the decision that was made."
Principal Lisa Siegman of PS 3 said that she did not have any official confirmation. Unlike pre-K students, who stay in their classroom, kindergarten students move to the cafeteria, gym, and other specialty classrooms. Siegman expressed safety concerns, citing crowding, a complicated split-lunch schedule, and other logistical difficulties that may result from increasing the number of kindergarten classes.
PS 41 began to make calls to parents of pre-K students, who now have to scramble for pre-K seats in nearby public schools or find scarce (and costly) spots at private pre-Ks. "We got word, and we got on the phone," the PS 41 staffer said. "We would love to have some solution or options for our families."
DOE sources say they plan to release more news in the next few hours with "very specific details about the wait lists in Districts 2 and 3." Stay tuned for updates.