The Active Learning Elementary School

An Insideschools pick
137-20 FRANKLIN AVENUE
QUEENS NY 11355 Map
Phone: (718) 445-5730
Website: Click here
Admissions: unzoned
Principal: Robert Groff
Neighborhood: Flushing
District: 25
Grade range: PK-3
Parent Coordinator: LALITA KOVVURI
Number of full-day PK seats: 36
Extended PK hours offered: Contact program about extended hours.
Unzoned
Full Day
School-based pre-k

What's special:

Vegetarian lunch menu

The downside:

Students must find new school for fourth grade

InsideSchools Review

Our review:

The Active Learning Elementary School (TALES), an early childhood school in Flushing, has a focus in health, nutrition and physical education. Students spend one period a day learning about health or participating in physical education.

Opened in 2008, the school has quickly become one of the city’s top-performing schools. It has reading and math scores that are well above the citywide average, even though it has a large proportion of English Language Learners.

"The founding of our school was based on health and nutrition and teaching kids how to make healthy choices in the belief that they would be more successful academically and in their life,” Principal Robert Groff told NBC News.

TALES is the first public school in the nation to serve an entirely vegetarian lunch every day, with options like black bean and cheddar quesadillas, pizza bagels and a salad bar.

The school was recognized by the Alliance for a Healthier Generation as one of the healthiest schools in the nation. Students participate in healthy food tastings at least once a month. In May 2013, Dr. Sanjay Gupta of CNN praised the school in an online blog post.

In third grade, students demonstrate their literary progress by performing in a debate. Groff is committed to providing teachers with technology such as SMARTboards and iPads, and encourages faculty to meet regularly to improve their teaching skills.

Students have the opportunity to go on field trips that complement their studies, such as trips to farms where students work on non-fiction and writing tasks about animals. Classes grow their own vegetable gardens to learn about sustainability, according to the Department of Education’s Quality Review.

Special education: The school offers a range of services including speech therapy, occupational therapy and self-contained classes.

Admissions: Open to residents of District 25 by lottery. Applications are available on the school's website.

(Owen Minott, web reports, July 2013)

InsideStats

Click tabs above to see school stats

At a glance

Shared campus? No

This school is in its own building.

Number of Students 452

Average Daily Attendance 97%

Students at this school

Asian

  
86%

Black

  
2%

Hispanic

  
8%

White

  
3%

Free Lunch

  
80%

Special ed

  
9%

English Language Learners

  
56%

Safety & vibe

ARE KIDS
NICE?

How many teachers say bullying is a problem at school?

NA NA CITYWIDE AVERAGE

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained in the school?

97% 81% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

ARE CLASSES BIG?

Number of students in an average kindergarten class

NA NA CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Number of students in an average fifth grade class

NA NA CITYWIDE AVERAGE

DO TEACHERS LIKE THE SCHOOL?

How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?

97% 80% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

How many teachers would recommend this school to other parents?

NA NA CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Attendance

How many students are chronically absent?

6% 23% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Academics

How many teachers say this school offers enough programs, classes and activities to keep students engaged?

NA NA CITYWIDE AVERAGE

How many teachers say this school does a good job teaching social-emotional skills?

NA NA CITYWIDE AVERAGE

How many teachers say this school does a good job teaching organizational and study skills?

NA NA CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Percent of 3rd, 4th & 5th graders who scored 3 or 4 on the state math exam

91% 41% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Percent of 3rd, 4th & 5th graders who scored 3 or 4 on the state ela exam

86% 40% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Percent of 4th graders who scored 3 or 4 on the state science exam

NA NA CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Parents

Are parents involved?

How many parents responded to the school survey?

83% 64% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

How many parents say they attended at least one pta meeting in the last school year?

NA NA CITYWIDE AVERAGE

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?

NA NA CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Do parents like the school?

How many parents would recommend this school to other parents?

NA NA CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Special ed & ELL

How well does this school serve students with disabilities?

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

Percent of ICT students who scored 3 or 4 on the state math exam:

NA 19% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Percent of ICT students who scored 3 or 4 on the state ELA exam:

NA 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?

NA NA CITYWIDE AVERAGE

How many teachers say students with special needs are educated in the least restrictive environment appropriate?

97% 93% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

How many parents of students with ieps say this school offers a wide enough variety of services and activities for their children’s needs?

94% 86% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

How well does this school serve English language learners?

Percent of ell students who scored 3 or 4 on the state ELA exam:

68% 6% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Percent of former ell students who scored 3 or 4 on the state ELA exam:

100% 32% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

How many teachers say this school ensures that ells receive the same curriculum as non-ells with appropriate suppports?

NA NA CITYWIDE AVERAGE

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