P.S. 115 The James J. Ambrose School
QUEENS NY 11004 Map
P.S. 115 The James J. Ambrose School
Extended PK hours offered: No
PS 115 has high academic expectations, a district-wide gifted and talented program, and a music program that includes instruction on electric guitars.
It’s a traditional school in some respects. For example, children begin the day by reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. But it also incorporates some innovative practices. For example, an architect works on design principles with children in the G+T program.
Situated on a quiet residential street lined with large shade trees and small private homes, the school draws the majority of its students from the surrounding community, which is home to a burgeoning Indian population. The brick building is surrounded by well-kept shrubs and greenery. [See photo from school’s website]
The school has stable leadership and experienced teachers. Kathleen Sciortino, a long-time teacher and assistant principal, became principal in 2012 after the death of James Ambrose, who had been principal since 2003. About two-thirds of the teachers have more than 10 years’ experience, according the Learning Environment Survey. Parents and teachers give high marks to the principal and say academic expectations are high.
“There’s a very warm atmosphere,” said District Superintendent Anita Saunders. “The principal is lovely to speak to and very open. They work together as a team. The parent coordinator gives loads of workshops for parents.”
The school does not have a gym teacher on staff to provide a formal physical education program. Instead, each class is allotted use of the gym once or twice a week for activities under the supervision of their teachers. The Samuel Field Y offers and after school program. The Y offers an after school gardening program at the Queens Botanical Garden.
Special education: There are "self-contained" classes, which are only for children with special needs, as well as Special Education Teacher Support Services (SETSS).
Admissions: Neighborhood school. Students are admitted to the districtwide G+T program according to their scored on a test administered by the Department of Education. The parent coordinator gives tours to prospective parents on request. (Clara Hemphill, DOE statistics, interview, October 2013)
At a glance
Number of Students 699
Average Daily Attendance 96%
Safety & vibe
How many teachers say bullying is a problem at school?3% 17% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained in the school?93% 86% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
ARE CLASSES BIG?
Number of students in an average kindergarten class25 23 CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Number of students in an average fifth grade class26 26 CITYWIDE AVERAGE
DO TEACHERS LIKE THE SCHOOL?
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?75% 84% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
How many teachers would recommend this school to other parents?96% 87% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
How many students are chronically absent?8% 22% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Percent of 3rd, 4th & 5th graders who scored 3 or 4 on the state math exam
Percent of 3rd, 4th & 5th graders who scored 3 or 4 on the state ela exam
Percent of 4th graders who scored 3 or 4 on the state science exam
Does the school encourage family involvement?
How many parents say they were invited to an event at the school at least 3 times in the last school year?69% 75% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Do parents like the school?
How many parents would recommend this school to other parents?95% 94% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Special ed & ELL
How well does this school serve students with disabilities?
This school offers self-contained classes.
Percent of self-contained students who scored 3 or 4 on the state math exam:NA 8% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Percent of self-contained students who scored 3 or 4 on the state ELA exam:NA 2% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
This school offers team teaching (ict).
Percent of ICT students who scored 3 or 4 on the state math exam:27% 19% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Percent of ICT students who scored 3 or 4 on the state ELA exam:14% 9% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Percent of SETSS students who scored 3 or 4 on the state math exam:NA 17% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Percent of SETSS students who scored 3 or 4 on the state ELA exam:NA 9% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
How many parents say students with disabilities are included in all activities?
How many teachers say students with special needs are educated in the least restrictive environment appropriate?
How many parents of students with ieps say this school offers a wide enough variety of services and activities for their children’s needs?