P.S. 124 Yung Wing
MANHATTAN NY 10002 Map
P.S. 124 Yung Wing
Yung Wing School, PS 124 is a high achieving, neighborhood school appropriately named for the first Chinese immigrant to graduate from an American university. Located in Chinatown, the school is very much a reflection of the close-knit, immigrant community it serves. Many children are English language learners or speak Chinese exclusively at home, and most come from low income households. The school is home to a district-wide gifted and talented program, but many children at PS 124, regardless of class placement, are strong learners who move on to selective middle schools after graduation.
Principal Alice Hom has led the school since 2003. A veteran educator, Hom spent 18 years as a classroom teacher at the highly-regarded PS 6.
The tone is calm and cheery. Each day starts on a traditional note with two children reciting the Pledge of Allegiance over the PA system. In most grades class sizes run as high as 32, but teachers do a good job of making sure their students stay on task. In classes we observed, teachers were working with a small group of children while their classmates focused on individual assignments.
Parents say the school is run well. "It's the little things that make this school so special," said one mother. Each grade produces a monthly newsletter translated into Mandarin and Cantonese so parents can keep track of their children's school work. To make sure struggling students make the most of their early morning extra help, the staff prepares bagged breakfasts for children to take directly to their classrooms.
The school uses the same curriculum for its G&T and general education classes. The main differences lie in the pacing of instruction and types of projects. G&T students may plow through a unit of study quickly leaving more time to tackle additional topics and lengthier projects. In general education classes, teachers spend more time on the fundamentals, though research and writing projects are assigned too.
In addition to academics and physical education, students get instruction in art, music and technology. Second graders take swimming lessons at the Asser Levy Recreation Center. Chess instruction is part of the third grade curriculum. Fourth graders participate in a dance program sponsored by the National Dance Institute.
Despite language barriers and modest incomes, parents find ways to support the school. The PTA runs fundraisers like raffles, school photos and plant sales on Mother's Day. Parents fluent in English help with outreach to those who only speak Chinese. Some help run the library, which the school had to close temporarily when it first lost funding for a librarian.
The school's biggest drawback is its size. With enrollment close to 1000 students, it's hard for the administration to work closely with all teachers. Overall, parents and teachers gave high marks to the school on the 2010-11 Learning Environment Survey, but 29% of teachers who responded said they didn't get regular and helpful feedback about their teaching.
English as a second language: ESL instructors provide extra support to children in their regular classes. All teachers and support staff receive training in ESL support.
Special education: The school has both self-contained and ICT (Integrated Collaborative Teaching) classes and SETTS.
After school: The school offers a variety of activities including technology, gymnastics and tumbling, cooking, arts, fitness, literacy support, Spanish and Scrabble. The school's top-notch chess team is very successful at local, regional and national tournaments. There's a theater program started by actress Baayork Lee, who performed in the original stage production of "The King and I".
Admissions: Neighborhood school. Admission to the G&T program is based on student performance on the citywide G&T tests. (Laura Zingmond, January 2012)
At a glance
Number of Students 866
Average Daily Attendance 98%
Safety & vibe
How many teachers say bullying is a problem at school?5% 17% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained in the school?89% 83% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
ARE CLASSES BIG?
Number of students in an average kindergarten class19 23 CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Number of students in an average fifth grade class28 26 CITYWIDE AVERAGE
DO TEACHERS LIKE THE SCHOOL?
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?73% 80% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
How many teachers would recommend this school to other parents?73% 83% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
How many students are chronically absent?4% 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?54% 75% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Do parents like the school?
How many parents would recommend this school to other parents?98% 94% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Special ed & ELL
How well does this school serve students with disabilities?
This school does not offer self-contained classes.
Percent of self-contained students who scored 3 or 4 on the state math exam:NA 7% 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:32% 18% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Percent of ICT students who scored 3 or 4 on the state ELA exam:20% 9% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
This school does not offer SETSS.
Percent of SETSS students who scored 3 or 4 on the state math exam:NA 16% 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?