Thomas C. Giordano Middle School 45

BRONX NY 10458 Map
Phone: (718) 584-1660
Website: Click here
Admissions: zoned
Principal: Annamaria Giordano
Neighborhood: Fordham
District: 10
Grade range: 06 thru 08
Parent coordinator: LETICIA JULIAN

What's special:

Gifted programs for Spanish speakers and English speakers

The downside:

Kids complain of occasional fights

The InsideStats


Our review

MS 45 is located in the heart of the Bronx's bustling Little Italy, where cured sausages dangle from the butchers' ceilings, and tour buses stop by for fresh pasta and the finest pecorino cheese. Despite such heavy Italian influences in the neighborhood, today the school mostly serves Mexican and some Albanian immigrants.

The school is welcoming despite its large size. It has a big room where parents gather and a comfortable teachers' lounge. There is also a room filled with mini-kitchens that students use after school for cooking classes. The staff is kind, classrooms and hallways are decorated with colorful artwork. An on-site health clinic, which sees about 80 students per week, provides free services, such as physicals, immunizations, asthma support, and mental health services.

Students are grouped into academies, each with its own theme and dedicated space. Aurora is for gifted Spanish-speaking students and Giordano Prep is for gifted English speakers. Students in the "Law Institute" visit the Bronx courthouse, and learn about law enforcement from FBI officials who come to the school each year in a surveillance van. Students in the Vista program perform community service. The Renaissance academy serves children in self-contained special education classes.

Most students agree that teachers inspire them to learn, according to the Learning Environment Survey. "Everybody has a certain passion...[our teachers] bring that passion into the classroom," said Principal Annamaria Giordano, who commutes three hours daily from Connecticut and is the daughter of the school's namesake, Thomas C. Giordano, who was a teacher at the school.

Like a lot of middle schools, there are some concerns about order. While nearly all students say they feel safe in class, kids complain of occasional fights and many teachers say discipline could be improved, according to the Learning Environment Survey. About 100 children were suspended in 2011, fewer than at many comparable middle schools.

Special education: There are nine self-contained classes, and three collaborative team teaching classes.

Admissions: Zoned neighborhood school. Students from districts 9 and 10 may are admitted to the Aurora and Giordano Prep based on their 4th grade test scores and attendance records. (Vanessa Witenko, November 2008, updated with DOE stats, May 2012 )

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