J.H.S. 80 The Mosholu Parkway

BRONX NY 10467 Map
Phone: (718) 405-6300
Admissions: neighborhood school, January entrance exams for honors
Wheelchair accessible
Principal: Emmanuel Polanco
Neighborhood: Norwood
District: 10
Grade range: 06 thru 08
Parent coordinator: YSAIRA PAULINO

What's special:

Standardized test scores on the rise

The downside:

School was scheduled to close and reopen with different leadership

The InsideStats



Our review

Lovey Mazique-Rivera, who replaced Kim Piccolino as principal in 2004, was removed in March 2012 and replacedl by Lauren Reiss, who was principal of IS 166 before it closed in 2011. Subsequently Emanuel Polanco was named interim acting principal. The school's test scores rose significantly in 2012 despite it being named a "turnaround school" slated to have a name change and a change in staff. The turnaround designation came after JHS 80 was  supposed to receive Small Improvement Grant funding of up to $2 million to implement the “Restart” intervention model.  Each “Restart” school was to be matched to a non-profit educational partner organization that would work closely with the principal and school community to implement a targeted improvement plan aimed at strengthening the curriculum, developing academic supports for students, and helping teachers improve practice. 

2002 Review: With eighth grade English and math scores well below the city's already dismal average, the Isobel Rooney Middle School has not had much to boast about in recent years. Then, in 2001, the school received some welcome news: a spike in English test results. A harbinger of things to come? Yes, if the school's new principal, Kim Piccolino, has her way. "Wherever my kids are, I will move them further academically and socially," she said. "I want to help them make better choices than they currently exhibit in their character." Piccolino rewards good behavior by heaping praise on students when it is called for. "I am really proud of your changes," we heard her tell one student when we visited. The school has been spruced up under her direction. Hallways are spotless and newly-painted, with bright colors replacing institutional green. Piccolino is updating the main library, while developing small classroom libraries, too.

Rooney is a magnet school built around the theme of "community exploration." Students may perform community service in nursing homes, hospitals and other institutions. The school is structured to encourage a close rapport between students and teachers. Entering kids are placed in one of several houses where they stay with the same group of instructors until graduation. Close to two thirds of the students are Hispanic, but other kids come from places as diverse as Albania and Bangladesh- for these immigrants the school offers a strong English immersion program.

The school boasts several celebrities as graduates: Penny Marshall, Calvin Klein and Ralph Lauren.

(Jacquie Wayans, 2002)

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