P.S. 189

An Insideschools pick
2580 AMSTERDAM AVENUE
MANHATTAN NY 10040 Map
Phone: (212) 927-8303
Website: Click here
Admissions: Neighborhood school
Principal: THERESA LUGER
Neighborhood: Washington Heights
District:6
Grade range: PK-5
Parent Coordinator: SILVIA SUERO
Zoned
Wheelchair Accessible

What's special:

Small class size; excellent teachers; school feels like one big family

The downside:

Limited pre-K program.

InsideSchools Review

Our review:

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)

InsideStats

Click tabs above to see school stats

At a glance

Shared campus? No

This school is in its own building.

Number of Students 1123

Average Daily Attendance 93%

Students at this school

Asian

  
0%

Black

  
1%

Hispanic

  
98%

White

  
1%

Free Lunch

  
90%

Special ed

  
14%

English Language Learners

  
32%

Safety & vibe

ARE KIDS
NICE?

How many teachers say bullying is a problem at school?

18% 15% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

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

80% 83% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

ARE CLASSES BIG?

Number of students in an average kindergarten class

25 23 CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Number of students in an average fifth grade class

27 26 CITYWIDE AVERAGE

DO TEACHERS LIKE THE SCHOOL?

How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?

79% 79% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

How many teachers would recommend this school to other parents?

87% 84% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Attendance

How many students are chronically absent?

21% 22% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Academics

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

85% 85% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

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

83% 84% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

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

87% 88% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Percent of 3rd, 4th & 5th graders who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 math exam

20% 32% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Percent of 3rd, 4th & 5th graders who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 ela exam

17% 27% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Percent of 4th graders who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 science exam

77% 87% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Parents

Are parents involved?

How many parents responded to the 2013 school survey?

60% 69% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

How many parents say they attended at least one pta meeting in the 2012-2013 school year?

79% 72% 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 2012-2013 school year?

79% 74% 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?

Percent of self-contained students who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 math exam:

0% 5% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Percent of self-contained students who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 ELA exam:

0% 2% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Percent of ICT students who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 math exam:

7% 13% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Percent of ICT students who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 ELA exam:

4% 7% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Percent of SETSS students who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 math exam:

0% 11% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Percent of SETSS students who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 ELA exam:

0% 7% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

How many parents say students with disabilities are included in all activities?

79% 77% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

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

93% 91% 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?

93% 89% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

How well does this school serve English language learners?

Percent of ell students who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 ELA exam:

1% 5% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

Percent of former ell students who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 ELA exam:

13% 29% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

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

85% 91% CITYWIDE AVERAGE

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