PS 10 Magnet School of Math, Science and Design Technology
An Insideschools pick
An Insideschools pick for Special Education
BROOKLYN NY 11215 Map
PS 10 Magnet School of Math, Science and Design Technology
PS 10 is a popular choice for parents from Sunset Park, the South Slope, Windsor Terrace and beyond. The administration is welcoming and the building is mostly barrier-free for students with limited mobility. School leaders have made a significant commitment to children with special needs, including a fully accessible playground. The school is “really, actively diverse ,” said Principal Laura Scott, “racially, economically, physically.”
Parents are embraced at PS 10. The parent executive board has over 30 parents leading committees ranging from Arabic translators to Safety to Harvest Day. The PTA functions as a non-profit and funds and oversees an after school program – a massive undertaking with 24 staff culled from teachers and community members who bring unique skills. Offerings include Glee Club, Hula Dancing, Shutterbug and Sign Language. It runs from 3-6 p.m. each weekday and parents pay between $200 and $1000 per three month session. Some scholarships are available. Others go to PS 124 where they participate in a free program run by the YMCA and attended by students from other schools. Parents also publish a monthly newsletter and maintain a website.
Jackie, an articulate 3rd grader with some limited mobility, praised the school’s barrier-free playground and said his favorite subject is computers. He has only one complaint: the toilets sometimes back-up in the old 1920 building. “We need real, accessible bathrooms,” said Parent Coordinator Madeline Seide. “We never stop until we get what we need. We are a grant-seeking group of people.”
Teachers are encouraged to explore learning themes in their classrooms according to their passions. In one science-themed kindergarten, a boy gently stroked a white rabbit while other kids peered into a box filled with newborn chicks. The walls were filled with rainforest-themed art. One year a teacher showcased dance from around the world and another took first graders to Washington, D.C., to tour the White House. The school tries to prepare children for tests indirectly. “We incorporate test prep seamlessly in the learning,” said Seide. Inquiry-based learning, where kids raise questions, research and investigate, can be fostered with any topic, she maintained. A possible downside is that parents have been known to request certain teachers based on what each one offers.
On our visit we saw teachers using iPads to test children’s reading skills. Second grade teacher Jimmy Najjar said he appreciates the literacy support he has received from Carl Anderson, a lead staff developer at Teacher’s College Reading and Writing project, and a PS 10 parent, who volunteers his expertise. PS 10 also has a math and literacy coach on staff. Every student uses the science lab one to three times per week depending on his grade level. Teachers make an effort to integrate disciplines. In science class kids watched “Man on Wire,” a documentary about a celebrated tightrope walker, then read Mirette on the High Wire for a different take on the same subject.
A large number of teachers are technology neophytes, wary of email and computers in general, according to the school’s Comprehensive Education Plan. The CEP also suggests that children learning English need more support.
Some parents are disappointed that the gifted and talented program is being discontinued. Starting in fall 2011, no kindergartners were admitted to the gifted program although children in the upper grades may continue in the program until graduation.
The principal is particularly proud of the school’s relationship with the Metropolitan Opera Guild; children across all grade levels learn everything from music and lyrics to set design and building. Kindergartners also learn keyboarding with Music and the Brain and second graders swim at the ‘Y’. In a school newsletter, Scott said children need “more than just math and reading; we have to give them something to look forward to every day.”
Special Education: The school has six inclusion classrooms that use the Integrated Co-Teaching (ICT) approach to teach special education students together with their general education peers. There are two self-contained classrooms. Adaptive equipment allows all students to participate in all aspects of the school.
Admissions: Neighborhood school. Sign up for tours on the website at www.ps10.org. Space for students outside of the zone is limited after a 2012 rezoning of Park Slope schools added eight blocks to the PS 10 zone. (Lydie Raschka, September 2011; updated zoning information 2013)
At a glance
Number of Students 921
Average Daily Attendance 95%
Safety & vibe
How many teachers say bullying is a problem at school?2% 15% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained in the school?91% 83% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
ARE CLASSES BIG?
Number of students in an average kindergarten class24 23 CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Number of students in an average fifth grade class31 26 CITYWIDE AVERAGE
DO TEACHERS LIKE THE SCHOOL?
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?92% 79% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
How many teachers would recommend this school to other parents?100% 84% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
How many students are chronically absent?11% 22% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Percent of 3rd, 4th & 5th graders who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 math exam
Percent of 3rd, 4th & 5th graders who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 ela exam
Percent of 4th graders who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 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 2012-2013 school year?84% 74% 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?
As of 2012-2013, this school offers self-contained classes.
Percent of self-contained students who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 math exam:7% 5% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Percent of self-contained students who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 ELA exam:0% 2% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
As of 2012-2013, this school offers team teaching (ict).
Percent of ICT students who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 math exam:15% 13% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Percent of ICT students who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 ELA exam:8% 7% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
As of 2012-2013, this school offers SETSS.
Percent of SETSS students who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 math exam:32% 11% CITYWIDE AVERAGE
Percent of SETSS students who scored 3 or 4 on the 2013 ELA exam:15% 7% 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?