P.S. 319

Grades Pre-K, K-1
Staff Pick
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Location

360 Keap Street
Brooklyn NY 11211
Williamsburg (District 14)
Trains: Z to Marcy Ave; J, M to Hewes St; G, L to Metropolitan Ave-Lorimer St
Buses: B24, B39, B44, B46, B48, B60, B62, Q54, Q59

Contact

Phone
718-388-1588
Principal
Aleyda Zamora Martinez
Parent Coordinator
Rubi Soto

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

What’s Special

A small, cheerful early childhood center

The Downside

Children must move to another setting after 1st grade

Our Review

Formerly an annex for the now-closed PS 19, across the street, PS 319 is an oddity in the city's public school system, serving only pre-kindergarten through 1st-grade children. This tiny Williamsburg school has a Spanish and English dual language program in addition to regular classes. Even though pre-k is not "officially" dual language, children sing songs in both languages, and teachers post labels around the room in Spanish and English.

Staff members stay for years, even decades, which may account for the relaxed, close-knit atmosphere. "It's a small environment," said a parent. "I like the friendliness, the teachers." Teachers do not shy away from hugging a child if they feel it's beneficial. We watched a veteran teacher comfort a child who'd had a very rough start in September. "He responds to caring," she said, patting him on the back as he relaxed into her embrace.

Classrooms are not identical but children appeared settled and familiar with routines in all the rooms. Some teachers display artwork that looks almost identical while others put up a mixture of creative styles. One 1st-grade teacher had an "early finishers" board so faster learners could choose extra work after finishing their required work. Over time, teachers have fine-tuned writing instruction with help from trainers at Teachers College, Columbia University, and have added more number routines to each day.

Principal Aleyda Zamora Martinez moved to New York in her teens from Nicaragua and graduated from Brooklyn College. She recalls running a packed after-school program at PS 19 (now PS 414), with ping pong and table games, as she rose through the ranks from teaching assistant to bilingual teacher to assistant principal. She became principal of PS 319 in 2005.

Parents are welcome here. They help lead craft projects tied to in-school lessons, serve as "mystery readers," and are invited to attend workshops. About a dozen families move away each year due to rising rents in this desirable neighborhood, but it hasn't resulted in much change in the mostly Hispanic make-up of the school. The attraction of the school's dual language environment has helped stop a decline in numbers of students, according to the principal. And plans call for a third pre-k to be added in 2015, which may draw more families.

There is no music teacher but we heard kids singing in several classes and there are science, social studies and art teachers. Children play in the courtyard or move to animated exercise videos. On very cold days they walk laps inside the square donut-shaped building.

The building has few hallways so one must walk through classrooms to get to others. Two large rooms are divided only by shelving, as in the open classrooms of the 1960s. Perhaps surprisingly, the arrangement works: Classes are orderly and teachers keep kids focused despite the distraction of, say, a science lesson in the next room where kids are blowing up balloons to learn about the properties of air.

SPECIAL EDUCATION: There are two team-taught ICT (integrated co-teaching) classes in 1st grade. Some children work with a specialist up to three times a week on letters, sounds and writing. The teacher works with small groups of children who need a boost in understanding numbers. "It works so well," said the RTI (response to intervention) teacher who assists children who lag in skills.

ADMISSIONS: Neighborhood school. Families may choose between PS 319 and PS 414. Martinez said some parents prefer the smaller setting and others want their children to get used to the bigger school. Most children switch to PS 414 for 2nd grade with some exceptions depending on school zone or choice. About 10 percent are from out of zone. (Lydie Raschka, April 2015)

About the students

Enrollment
130
Pre-K seats
38
Asian
1.5%
Black
4.6%
Hispanic
90.8%
White
3.1%
Other
0.0%
Free or reduced priced lunch
100%
Students with disabilities
12%
English language learners
18%

About the school

Shared campus?
No
This school is in its own building.
How crowded? (Full is 100%)
156%
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Attendance

Average daily attendance
93%
94% Citywide Average
How many students are chronically absent?
27%
21% Citywide Average

Is this school safe?

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained at this school?
100%
82% Citywide Average
How many teachers say their students are safe outside around this school?
100%
88% Citywide Average

About the leadership

Years of principal experience at this school
10.8
6.6 Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
85%
82% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal has a clear vision for this school?
92%
90% Citywide Average
How many teachers trust the principal?
85%
82% Citywide Average

About the teachers

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
91%
78% Citywide Average
Teacher attendance
95%
96% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
100%
85% Citywide Average
How many teachers think the staff collaborate to make this school run effectively?
100%
89% Citywide Average

Do parents like the school?

How many parents responded to the school survey?
100%
65% Citywide Average
How many parents say they are invited to visit classrooms?
100%
85% Citywide Average
How many parents say this school offers enough courses, activities and services to keep their children interested in school?
99%
86% Citywide Average
How many parents say their child's teacher helped their child adjust to Pre-K?
100%
98% Citywide Average
How many parents say this Pre-K program helped them consider which elementary schools would meet their childrens' needs?
100%
92% Citywide Average
How many Pre-K parents say their child's teacher gave helpful ideas for how to support their child's learning?
100%
97% Citywide Average
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Arts offerings

This school has 0 dedicated spaces for the arts.
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

How does this school serve English Language Learners?

This school offers Dual Language classes in Spanish.

How does this school serve students with disabilities?

This school offers self-contained classes
This school offers team teaching (ICT)
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school offers enough activities and services for their children's needs?
100%
86% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school works to achive the goals of their students' IEPs?
100%
91% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say they are satisfied with the IEP development process at this school?
100%
89% Citywide Average
For more information about our data sources, see About Our Data
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