P.S. 206 Joseph F Lamb

Phone: (718) 743-5598
Admissions: neighborhood school
Neighborhood: Midwood
District: 22
Grade range: 0K thru 08
Parent coordinator: JENNIFER HOM

What's special:

Instructional approach benefits students of all abilities

The downside:

Students would like more variety in programs and classes

The Inside Stats



Our review

PS 206 is a large school that serves children in kindergarten through 8th grade, including many Chinese and Russian immigrants. Among the staff are members who speak Cantonese, Mandarin, Russian, Spanish and Vietnamese—an asset for communicating with parents. The school enjoys excellent attendance rates and solid test scores, even among English language learners and those with special needs. Regular letters go home with a child's attendance record.

Teachers are assisted in classrooms by Brooklyn College student teachers and they closely examine test results to help their many English learners boost specific skills and vocabulary, according to the school's yearly plan. It helps that Principal Dierdre Keyes is a former 5th-grade English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher. The school has seven certified ESL teachers on staff.

Although the principal is a proponent of the Teacher's College Reading and Writing Project at Columbia University (sometimes faulted for lacking enough phonics and skill work), there is also a "structured approach to decode and define vocabulary," according to the Department of Education's Quality Review Report. This has resulted in better performance for children with special needs and those learning English.

Children take science field trips to the Genovesi Environmental Center and may participate in the gardening club. There is a math club for students in grades 6–8 and a small 7th-grade lunchtime math group for students who need extra help.

Every month, parents are invited to an open house and to stay afterward for a workshop on how to help their children with academics. For fun, families are invited to Cultural Night, free yoga classes and a talent show.

Housed in a five-story brick building, PS 206 has a large art room and two gyms. The school is named for Joseph Lamb—a ragtime piano player—and, not coincidentally, the school has a variety of art programs, including a middle school chorus, and partnerships with New York City Ballet and Arts Connection. Even so, almost half the middle school students reported on a survey that the school does not offer a wide enough variety of programs, classes and activities to keep them interested.

The Brooklyn Chinese American Association hosts an afterschool program Monday through Friday until 6 p.m.

Special education: There is a team-taught class on every grade for a mix of children in general education and those with special needs. Teachers stay with the same class from 7th to 8th grade. English language arts and social studies teachers work together to improve students literacy skills.

Admission: Neighborhood school. (Lydie Raschka, DOE data, April 2014)

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