I.S. 318 Eugenio Maria De Hostos

Grades 6-8
Staff Pick
Marquee homepage

Location

101 Walton Street
Brooklyn NY 11206
Williamsburg (District 14)
Trains: G to Broadway ; J, M to Lorimer St
Buses: B15, B43, B44, B44-SBS, B46, B47, B48, B57, B60

Contact

Phone
718-782-0589
Principal
Leander Windley
Parent Coordinator
Ana Berroa

What’s Special

Academic support for students of all abilities, strong sports and chess teams

The Downside

May be too traditional for some

Our Review

IS 318 achieved a level of renown unusual for a public middle school when its championship chess team starred in the 2012 documentary film Brooklyn Castle. Beyond its winning chess and basketball teams, IS 318 is a well-run, fairly traditional school that strives to serve children of all abilities not just the gifted.

"We'll take a student reading at a [1st-grade] level and by the time they graduate they'll, at worst, be one year behind," says Principal Leander Windley, who has been with the school for twenty years, first as a basketball coach and teacher of robotics and then as assistant principal. He took charge in 2012 after Fred Rubino, a longtime beloved leader, left to become superintendent of District 14 and died shortly after.

A former engineer, Windley takes a particular interest in technology training. The school has a STEM class for 7th-graders focusing on robotics and hopes to expand it to all grades and bring in many aspects of engineering as well as programming.

Children are grouped by ability starting in 6th grade. About 40 percent are in gifted classes for all major subjects. While some students are placed upon entering, most are admitted later on the basis of their work. Many of them will take several Regents exams, including the living environment and Earth science tests. Instruction is well-organized if somewhat old-fashioned, with desks in rows and teachers often standing at the blackboard.

We saw some strong teaching and high levels of enthusiasm among the students. In a 6th-grade English class for children who need extra help, the teacher gently coaxed a shy girl into reading aloud a passage about chocolate in the Unites States, and she ended up doing very well. In a 7th-grade gifted science class, the teacher led a spirited discussion of what bile does. Students quickly formed small groups to read articles and report back on stomach disorders.

However, in a few rooms we visited, the energy was low and students seemed a bit bored, but never disruptive.

The staff believes a range of activities, such as sports and chess, will encourage children to come to school and be engaged. Students take a so-called SHOP class, such as art and band, three times a week. Another option cooking allows students to use the school's well-stocked kitchen and six ovens to make treats like pretzels and oatmeal cookies.

In the most recent Learning Environment Survey, more than 95 percent of parents said they were satisfied or very satisfied. Teachers almost unanimously recommend the school, and students say classes and programs keep them interested. The UFT chapter leader says there is a good sense of collaboration in the building. "If its going to help the kids, adults are 100 percent on board with it.

Students go on to a variety of high schools with many attending academically advanced programs. Choices include the High School for Health Professions and Human Services, Williamsburg Preparatory School, La Guardia High School and the High School of Fashion Industries.

Special education: IS 318 provides a range of settings: self-contained classes where students have a different teacher for each subject; self-contained classes for students with intellectual disabilities where one teacher covers the full day of instruction; support services to students in regular classes; and Integrated Co-Teaching classes combining general education students with those with disabilities.

Admissions: IS 318 is open to children in District 14. In recent years, it has received more than 1,000 applications for 500 6th-grade spots. Students are not picked for their test scores, but for their commitment to work hard, based partly on teacher recommendation and grades. "We're not a school that's going to shy away from taking kids," Dean Pam Curcio says. (Gail Robinson, April 2014)

About the students

Enrollment
1358
Asian
7.2%
Black
17.7%
Hispanic
61.3%
White
13.0%
Other
0.8%
Free or reduced priced lunch
53%
Students with disabilities
18%
English language learners
6%

About the school

Shared campus?
No
This school is in its own building.
Uniforms required?
No
Metal detectors?
No
How crowded? (Full is 100%)
92%
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Attendance

Average daily attendance
95%
93% Citywide Average
How many students are chronically absent?
16%
20% Citywide Average

Is this school safe?

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained at this school?
94%
78% Citywide Average
How many students think bullying happens most or all of the time at this school?
50%
50% Citywide Average
How many students say they feel safe in the hallways, bathrooms and locker rooms?
88%
83% Citywide Average
How many students say most students treat each other with respect?
60%
43% Citywide Average

About the leadership

Years of principal experience at this school
4.3
6.0 Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
89%
82% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal has a clear vision for this school?
95%
89% Citywide Average
How many teachers trust the principal?
87%
83% Citywide Average

About the teachers

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
87%
72% Citywide Average
Teacher attendance
94%
96% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
98%
82% Citywide Average
How many teachers think the staff collaborate to make this school run effectively?
99%
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?
28%
27% Citywide Average
How many students scored 3-4 on the state ELA exam?
41%
35% Citywide Average

Arts offerings

This school has 3 licensed arts teacher in Dance (part-time), Music (part-time), Theater (part-time), Visual arts (part-time), Music, and Theater

Engaging curriculum?

How many students say this school offers enough programs, classes and activities to keep them interested?
95%
76% Citywide Average
How many students say they are challenged in most or all of their classes?
65%
61% Citywide Average
How many students say the programs, classes and activities here encourage them to develop talent outside academics?
93%
72% Citywide Average

Are students prepared for high school?

Accelerated courses offered for high school credit
Spanish, US History, Algebra I, Earth Science, Living Environment
How many 8th graders earn high school credit?
38%
26% Citywide Average
How many graduates of this school pass all their classes in 9th grade?
95%
84% Citywide Average
What high schools do most graduates attend?
Williamsburg Charter HS, Williamsburg Preparatory School, and HS for Health Professions and Human Services
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

How does this school serve English Language Learners?

How many English language learners score 3-4 on the State ELA exam?
1%
3% Citywide Average
How many former English language learners score 3-4 on the State ELA exam?
37%
42% 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
1.72
1.9 Citywide Average
Average math score for self-contained students
1.97
2.1 Citywide Average
Average ELA score for ICT students
1.86
1.9 Citywide Average
Average ELA score for self-contained students
2.02
2.2 Citywide Average
Average math score for SETSS students
2.25
2.3 Citywide Average
Average ELA score for SETSS students
2.37
2.3 Citywide Average
How many students say that students with disabilities are included in all activities?
85%
68% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school offers enough activities and services for their children's needs?
93%
87% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school works to achive the goals of their students' IEPs?
92%
90% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say they are satisfied with the IEP development process at this school?
94%
89% Citywide Average
For more information about our data sources, see About Our Data
  • Give specific examples. Tell us why this school rocks (or doesn't).
  • Criticism is fine, but no profanity, racist or ethnic slurs, or personal attacks.
  • All users must comply with our Terms of Use.