The Anderson School

Grades K-8
Staff Pick
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Location

100 West 77 Street
Manhattan NY 10024
Upper West Side (District 3)
Trains: B, C to 81st St-Museum of Nat Hist; 2, 3 to 72nd St; 1 to 79th St
Buses: M10, M104, M11, M5, M57, M72, M79

Contact

Phone
212-595-7193
Principal
Jodi Hyde
Parent Coordinator
Ann Crenovich

What’s Special

Fast-paced academics and engaging instruction

The Downside

Daunting admission odds

Our Review

One of the most demanding and selective schools in New York, PS 334 The Anderson School attracts children from all over the city. Engaging instruction, imaginative projects and a stellar record of getting children into top high schools (both public and private) has made Anderson one of the most sought-after schools anywhere.

Dont set your heart on sending your child here, however. The competition for admission is unbelievably tough. Nearly 15,000 4-year-olds take the citys gifted and talented test each year; of those, 1,500 score high enough to qualify for Anderson and four other citywide gifted programs. Just 50 are admitted to Andersons kindergarten and a handful in 1st through 3rd grades. The odds are ever so slightly better in the middle school, particularly in 7th grade (when one-third of the class leaves for Hunter College High School, which begins in 7th grade.)

The school has a particularly strong math program. Rather than relying on one set of textbooks, teachers skillfully blend different approaches that combine fast-paced instruction with deep conceptual understanding. Teachers encourage children to look for different ways to solve problems and the kids seem to take joy in discoverynot just in getting the right answer. By 8th grade, nearly all have passed the high school algebra Regents exam.

While kindergarten classrooms elsewhere have removed blocks and dramatic play areas, at Anderson children enjoy center time when they may shop at a play store (and learn to make change), squeeze and flatten bits of clay (strengthening fine motor skills) or roll marbles down ramps made from wooden blocks. On our visit, we saw a kindergartner put together base ten blocks usually used by older children to learn addition, subtraction and place value. As the boy used the blocks to construct a house, the teacher encouraged him to count themwhat turned into a three-digit addition problem.

Most children have reading skills that are well above grade level, with 1st-graders often reading books more typical for 3rd-graders. (See the school website for recommended summer reading.) Third-graders essays about where they spent their summer vacation reflect both sophistication and the good luck of being world travelers at a young age, with stories about a trip to China; a country house in Woodstock; Cancun, Mexico, and Disneyland in France. Fourth-graders essays showed an understanding of complex ideas, such as a report one child wrote about the air quality in New York nail salons.

A beloved science teacher, Charles Conway, asked 5th-graders to determine how changing the length of a pendulum affects the number of swings in a given time period. Sixth-graders use a rooftop weather station to predict the weather. Eighth-graders take the high school Regent exam for living environment, as biology is called.

In an 8th-grade U.S. history class, we heard a lively discussion comparing the debate over the Fugitive Slave Act to todays gridlock in Congress. In an 8th-grade English class, children were asked to write a coming-of-age memoira moment when your perspective on the world changed and you grew up a little, using as models writing by authors such as Jeanette Walls, Ernest Hemingway and David Sedaris.

The homework load is heavy but not oppressive. Kindergartners have weekly homework packets. By middle school, children may spend two hours a night on homework. Kids compete in the math team or the Science Olympiad, but arent cut-throat, says Principal Jodi Hyde. They say, Yes, were competitive because we want to do well. But they arent mean to each other. They are competitive with themselves.

The school is committed to giving extra academic and emotional support to all. Despite this help, a handful of children cant keep up with the work and perhaps one a year leaves the school as a result. Graduates go on to the top high schools in the city, including elite public schools like Stuyvesant and Bronx High School of Science and private schools like Trinity.

The school has a very active PTA that raises more than $1 million a year for assistant teachers in every class as well as programs such as dance, chess, sports and field trips. The PTA has a suggested contribution of $1,300 per child. Some are put off by the Type A crowd, but many appreciate such intense participation.

SPECIAL EDUCATION: The school offers speech and occupational therapy. A handful of children who have disabilities such as dyslexia receive extra help. A guidance counselor works on social skills with children with conditions like Aspergers syndrome.

ADMISSIONS: Officially, students must score in the 97th percentile on the G&T tests to qualify for Anderson and other citywide G&T schools, but Anderson rarely admits children who score below the 99th percentile (except for younger siblings of Anderson students who qualify with a 97). Yellow bus service is available for Manhattan students who live more than half a mile from school. Students outside Manhattan arrange their own transportation. (Clara Hemphill, October 2015)

About the students

Enrollment
551
Asian
26.5%
Black
3.6%
Hispanic
8.7%
White
54.5%
Other
6.7%
Free or reduced priced lunch
8%
Students with disabilities
5%
English language learners
0%

About the school

Shared campus?
Yes
This school shares a building with the Computer School and MS 247
Uniforms required?
No
Metal detectors?
No
How crowded? (Full is 100%)
102%
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Attendance

Average daily attendance
98%
94% Citywide Average
How many students are chronically absent?
1%
19% Citywide Average

Is this school safe?

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained at this school?
89%
76% Citywide Average
How many students think bullying happens most or all of the time at this school?
23%
50% Citywide Average
How many students say they feel safe in the hallways, bathrooms and locker rooms?
98%
84% Citywide Average
How many teachers say their students are safe outside around this school?
100%
88% Citywide Average
How many students say most students treat each other with respect?
75%
45% Citywide Average

About the leadership

Years of principal experience at this school
6.8
6.4 Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
92%
81% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal has a clear vision for this school?
85%
87% Citywide Average
How many teachers trust the principal?
85%
81% Citywide Average

About the teachers

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
77%
78% Citywide Average
Teacher attendance
96%
96% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
100%
82% Citywide Average
How many teachers think the staff collaborate to make this school run effectively?
97%
86% Citywide Average

Do parents like the school?

How many parents responded to the school survey?
85%
60% Citywide Average
How many parents say they are invited to visit classrooms?
91%
78% Citywide Average
How many parents say this school offers enough courses, activities and services to keep their children interested in school?
95%
82% 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?
98%
39% Citywide Average
How many students scored 3-4 on the state ELA exam?
96%
42% Citywide Average

Arts offerings

This school has 3 dedicated spaces for Music and Visual arts
This school has 3 licensed arts teacher in Music and Theater

Engaging curriculum?

How many students say this school offers enough programs, classes and activities to keep them interested?
89%
71% Citywide Average
How many students say they are challenged in most or all of their classes?
58%
59% Citywide Average
How many students say the programs, classes and activities here encourage them to develop talent outside academics?
83%
68% Citywide Average

Are students prepared for high school?

Accelerated courses offered for high school credit
Algebra I, Living Environment
How many 8th graders earn high school credit?
100%
28% Citywide Average
How many graduates of this school pass all their classes in 9th grade?
98%
86% Citywide Average
What high schools do most graduates attend?
Stuyvesant HS, Bronx HS of Science, and Fiorello H. LaGuardia HS of Music & Art and Performing Arts
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

How does this school serve students with disabilities?

This school offers self-contained classes
This school offers team teaching (ICT)
How many students say that students with disabilities are included in all activities?
72%
69% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school offers enough activities and services for their children's needs?
85%
85% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school works to achive the goals of their students' IEPs?
76%
90% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say they are satisfied with the IEP development process at this school?
81%
88% Citywide Average
For more information about our data sources, see About Our Data
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