PS/MS 15 Institute for Environmental Learning
Bronx NY 10453
Strong parental involvement in school open district-wide
No music program
PS/MS 15 is located in a residential neighborhood in the University Heights section of the Bronx, only a few minutes walk from the subway and Bronx Community College. Constructed in 1995, this wheelchair-accessible building is shared withPS 291, and PS 10, a District 75 school for severely disabled students.
According to the Daily News the STEM revolution has made it to PS/MS 15: The Institute for Environmental Learning, where half of students dont have access to computers or smartphones in their homes. In the 2009-2010 school year, Tara Edmunds became principal. A Bronx native and a graduate of Brooklyn Tech High School, sherecognizes the importanceof math and science instruction. At PS/MS 15, well-lit hallways feature colorful student work from various class subjects. The school has created an environment that promotes progressive and interactive academics as opposed to traditional, teacher directed lessons. Dr. John Hagan Brown, who holds a doctorate in cell biology, has taught 3rd and 4th grades at PS 15 since it was founded in 1995. He says: I felt they [the students] were lacking and that if I gave 120 percent, they could get at least 100%. Some learn by listening and some by watching and some by doing. So we do more hands on than ever before and lots of videos. PS 15 has intensive math and science classes for all students, a computer lab, math coaches and other resources that helped it best the city average on math and science tests, according to a Daily News report. The school has two science teachers, one for elementary and one for middle school. Eighth graders have the opportunity to take the Living Environment Regents, usually given in high school.
PS/MS 15 has a community-oriented focus. Middle school students hone leadership skills in service squads that assist younger children with tasks such as lining up at the cafeteria for lunch. The PTA organizes health-related workshops, including mammograms. According to Parent Coordinator Johnny Ortiz, parents involved on the School Leadership Team volunteer at fundraising activities and assist teachers. The school also partners withGood Shepherd Servicesfor an after-school program aimed at improving literacy and leadership skills. The partnership acts as a support system for students, especially at-risk youth. In grades K-4, students participate in the New York Road Runners Mighty Milers Program. There is no music program, but an arts teacher introduces song and dance through movement. Classroom teachers incorporate art into their lessons. Bass, piano, guitar & vocals are offered to 8th graders only through Renaissance Youth Center.
After school:The school hosts a wide variety of clubs and teams: environmental club, computer club, and football and basketball teams. While there is only a small courtyard on campus, students make use of a large field across the street which has a track and baseball diamond. In addition, an active PTA organizes sewing, baking, and cooking classes as well as raffles.
Admissions:The only entry point is in Kindergarten. Priority to District 10 siblings of students from 1st to 4th grades. Applications can be picked up for middle school and names placed on a waitlist. Most of the students stay at the school through middle school making open spots scarce in upper grades.
Special education: P.S./M.S 15 has self-contained classes and SETSS, OT, PT & Speech therapy.
[Photo supplied from schoolsFacebook] (Tumpe Trotter, November 2009; Jacquie Wayans, Web reports & interview sinterview, updated June 2013)