PS 241 STEM Institute of Manhattan

Grades K-5

Location

240 West 113 Street
Manhattan NY 10026
Harlem (District 3)
Trains: B, C to Cathedral Parkway-110th St; 2, 3 to Central Park North-110th St
Buses: M1, M10, M11, M116, M2, M3, M4, M7

Contact

Phone
212-678-2898
Principal
Marcia Hendricks

Zone for the 2017-2018 school year. Call school to confirm.

What’s Special

Kids learn computer programming and basic engineering

The Downside

Problems persist, despite improvements in school tone

Our Review

A long-troubled school, PS 241 has made modest progress under the leadership of Marcia Hendricks, who became principal in 2014. Discipline has improved, teachers are happier, and enrollment is increasing. On our visit, the atmosphere was warm and the children seemed content.

Known as the STEM Institute of Manhattan, the school has an engineering teacher who helps children design model windmills, build bridges with LEGOs, or build "houses" of styrofoam and toothpicks for the "Three Little Pigs" to see which material is stronger. Each child gets a laptop computer, and there is a nice Mac lab. Children learn computer coding, including languages such as HTML. Children spend five periods a week studying engineering and computer technology.

Still, the school is battered by huge challenges. Though the enrollment is higher than it was when Hendricks arrived, it has declined by more than two-thirds since 2006, when competition from charters in the neighborhood began to lure children from traditional public schools. The Department of Education has periodically threatened to close the school for low enrollment and poor academic performance. More than 80 percent of the children zoned for PS 241 attend other schools. PS 241 had one class on each grade and just 18 children in kindergarten at the time of our visit. One-fifth of the children are homeless, and one-quarter are chronically absent, missing more than one month of school, according to Department of Education statistics.

PS 241 shares a cheery, well-maintained 1938 building with Harlem Success Academy 4, a charter school known for its sky-high test scores, strict disciplinary practices, and aggressive marketing campaign; and Opportunity Charter School, which serves children in grades 6-12, including many with special needs. PS 241 takes up just half of a corridor on the building's second floor. Like her colleagues at many district schools, Hendricks says she receives transfers from Harlem Success Academy, including some who cannot conform to the charter's strict expectations for discipline.

Hendricks, who began her career as a para-professional and teacher in District 5 in Harlem, worked as a principal intern at PS 21 in Queens before coming to PS 241. District 3 Superintendent Ilene Altschul said in her 2015 Quality Review that there has been "an improvement in culture" at the school and "teachers feel respected and valued." Every teacher responding to the school survey in 2016 said the principal is an effective leader. In 2014, only 29 percent of teachers answering the school survey said the school was orderly and disciplined; by 2016, that number was up to 56 percent—a marked improvement, though still well below the citywide average.

SPECIAL EDUCATION: More than one-third of PS 241 pupils receive special education services. The school has two self-contained classes for children with special needs and several team-taught classes that mix special needs and general education pupils with two teachers.

ADMISSIONS: Neighborhood school. The school has frequent tours and welcomes children from outside the attendance zone. Children who enroll get a free book bag, a hoodie with the school logo, two long sleeved shirts and two short sleeved t-shirts. (Clara Hemphill, March 2017)

About the students

Enrollment
124
Asian
3.2%
Black
47.6%
Hispanic
41.9%
White
5.7%
Other
1.6%
Free or reduced priced lunch
90%
Students with disabilities
35%
English language learners
19%

About the school

Shared campus?
Yes
This school shares the building with Success Academy Harlem 4 Charter School and the Opportunity Charter School
How crowded? (Full is 100%)
83%
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Attendance

Average daily attendance
92%
94% Citywide Average
How many students are chronically absent?
28%
21% Citywide Average

Is this school safe?

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained at this school?
56%
81% Citywide Average
How many teachers say their students are safe outside around this school?
90%
85% Citywide Average

About the leadership

Years of principal experience at this school
1.7
6.6 Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
100%
80% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal has a clear vision for this school?
90%
87% Citywide Average
How many teachers trust the principal?
90%
79% Citywide Average

About the teachers

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
75%
78% Citywide Average
Teacher attendance
96%
96% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
67%
83% Citywide Average
How many teachers think the staff collaborate to make this school run effectively?
88%
87% Citywide Average

Do parents like the school?

How many parents responded to the school survey?
80%
64% Citywide Average
How many parents say they are invited to visit classrooms?
78%
85% Citywide Average
How many parents say this school offers enough courses, activities and services to keep their children interested in school?
87%
87% Citywide Average
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Test scores

How many students scored 3-4 on the state math exam?
8%
40% Citywide Average
How many students scored 3-4 on the state ELA exam?
18%
39% Citywide Average

Arts offerings

This school has 1 dedicated space for an Auditorium
This school has 0 licensed arts teachers in Dance, Music, Theater or Visual arts
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

How does this school serve English Language Learners?

How many former English language learners score 3-4 on the State ELA exam?
0%
22% Citywide Average

How does this school serve students with disabilities?

This school offers self-contained classes
This school offers team teaching (ICT)
Average math score for ICT students
1.57
2.0 Citywide Average
Average math score for self-contained students
1.81
2.3 Citywide Average
Average ELA score for ICT students
1.78
1.9 Citywide Average
Average ELA score for self-contained students
2.01
2.2 Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school offers enough activities and services for their children's needs?
77%
86% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school works to achive the goals of their students' IEPs?
86%
91% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say they are satisfied with the IEP development process at this school?
72%
89% Citywide Average
For more information about our data sources, see About Our Data
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