MANHATTAN NY 10040 Map
PS 189 is a welcoming school, a place where students celebrate their teachers' birthdays, parents are active volunteers, and Theresa Luger, the highly knowledgeable principal, is constantly improving operations. Under her leadership, class size has dropped to 20 students in grades K-3, a new computer lab has been established, and a new library is being constructed, thanks to the Robin Hood Foundation, an anti-poverty group. The school's hallways and classrooms are clean and organized. Each classroom has a computer, a colorful rug, a rocking chair, and hundreds of books placed in baskets. Some even have lizards, fish, and mealworms.
Luger has created a school that manages to serve both its many immigrant children learning English60 percent of the school population and students who need a lot of intellectual stimulation to remain interested in class. Struggling students work one on one with a reading coach five times a week for 50 minutes and use computer programs that help them with vocabulary and fluency. Two psychologists from New York-Presbyterian Hospital (formerly Columbia-Presbyterian) provide child and family counseling, and students from the George Washington high school complex read to 1st graders once a week. Luger places her top students into a separate, advanced class. "I need to keep those kids and keep them challenged," she said. Throughout the school, students benefit from extra activities. First and 4th graders are taught by the National Dance Institute, a not-for-profit arts-education group founded by the renowned ballet dancer Jacques d'Amboise.[The video at the left was produced by NDI].
In all the classes we saw, we were impressed by teaching that kept students focused and excited. Second graders who were writing essays about an animal they had selected used different-colored Post-it notes to help keep their research organized. As they read about their animal in books, they recorded important information on the memo-notes. Later, they sorted the Post-its by colors, each representing a different chapter of their essay. One student wrote about a spider: "You may think I live underground, but most of the time I live in a web."
Although the student population in the neighborhood is shrinking, the school does not have enough room for all prospective pre-K students, something Luger hopes to change as more space in the building becomes available. "If we get these kids in pre-K we would do a much better job than if they come from a different program," she said.
Parents are an important part of the PS 189 community. More than 200 of them volunteer, and they raise around $50,000 annually for the school. Students help out, too; 20 children work as safety hall monitors.
English as a Second Language: The school offers bilingual, English as a Second Language, and dual-language programs.
Special education: The school has self-contained classes, only for children with special needs, and "collaborative team teaching" (CTT) classes, which mix special and general education children in a class taught by two teachers, one of whom is certified in special education. The school is barrier-free for pre-K, kindergarten, and 1st grade. (Vanessa Witenko, March 2007)
At a glance
Number of Students 1123
Average Daily Attendance 93%
Safety & vibe
How many teachers say bullying is a problem at school?16% 17% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained in the school?75% 83% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
ARE CLASSES BIG?
Number of students in an average kindergarten class25 23 CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Number of students in an average fifth grade class27 26 CITYWIDE AVERAGE
DO TEACHERS LIKE THE SCHOOL?
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?78% 80% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
How many teachers would recommend this school to other parents?81% 83% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
How many students are chronically absent?21% 23% 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?76% 75% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Do parents like the school?
How many parents would recommend this school to other parents?96% 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:5% 7% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Percent of self-contained students who scored 3 or 4 on the state ELA exam:0% 2% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
This school does not offer team teaching (ict).
Percent of ICT students who scored 3 or 4 on the state math exam:NA 18% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Percent of ICT students who scored 3 or 4 on the state ELA exam:NA 9% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
This school offers SETSS.
Percent of SETSS students who scored 3 or 4 on the state math exam:11% 16% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Percent of SETSS students who scored 3 or 4 on the state ELA exam:17% 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?