PS/IS 30 Mary White Ovington

Grades K-2, 6-8

What’s Special

New building; school expanding to include elementary grades

The Downside

New building won't be able to house entire school once it is fully grown

Our Review

UPDATE SEPTEMBER 2006: As of the 2006-07 school year, Principal Linda Guarneri was named a network leader for Empowerment Schools. Her replacement as principal is Danielle Maringo.

2003 REVIEW: Opened in 1997, IS 30 is an Expeditionary Learning Outward Bound school, part of a progressive network of ten schools in the city that emphasize learning by doing, with a focus on \"character growth, teamwork, reflection, and literacy.\" Teachers connect academics to adventure and service through a variety of interdisciplinary, project-based learning \"expeditions.\" IS 30 is located in a building that once housed a Lutheran day school and apartments. If it weren\'t for the nameplate above the door, people indeed could mistake it for an apartment building. Inside, the lobby is bright and pleasant. On our visit, it was also the site for resource room services, due to a lack of space.

At lunchtime instead of kickball, some kids play chess in the lobby. Large rooms house an active arts program with students able to select drama, band, and visual arts as specialties. Whenever possible the arts activities reflect the \"expedition,\" or curriculum. In a recent year the school took part in a \"parents as art partners\" grant, where parents painted murals that still decorate some of the walls, including one with Chinese writing that reflected their children\'s study of the culture. After-school activities involve the Road Runners Club, in which kids run up to five miles twice a week and participate in weekend races in Central Park.

On a day we visited, the 7th-grade \"Superintendent\'s\" (honors) class was just back from a trip to a museum at the nearby Fort Hamilton Army Base, where they had examined artifacts from the Revolutionary War. \"We knew there were battles and weapons,\" said one girl, \"but we didn\'t actually know what they looked like.\" Social studies students were auditioning over their lunch hour for the \"Lincoln-Douglas\" debates, and there wasn\'t enough space for all those who wanted to participate. The question one young debater faced was: \"Should schools limit access to the Internet?\" Her immediate, unrehearsed response was, \"They should monitor kids but not limit the Internet.\" Sometimes the Outward Bound component of the curriculum has to give way to traditional teaching, as in Felloy Galanis\' high-school level \"Math A\" class, where 7th graders were learning to simplify an expression from an equation on the blackboard. It was Albert Einstein\'s birthday and written on the blackboard was a quote: \"Do not worry about your difficulties in math. I assure you that mine are more difficult.\" Galanis\' students also participate in gardening at the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens, designing their square-foot gardens using mathematical equations. She has also managed to bring some of this experience into her classroom; students get to measure the growth rates of their very own ginger and peanut plants.

The IS 30 staff voted in \"school-based option\" which means a committee of parents, teachers, and administrators chooses the teachers. The result is that all teachers buy into the philosophy. It\'s less clear that all of the students do. On a recent visit the principal walked into a class of 8th graders who were giving a substitute teacher a hard time. She asked them to remember the three \"C\'s\" of the school motto, (Curiosity, Character, Commitment). No amount of clues or cajoling could jog their memories. There is one honors class in 6th and 8th grade and two in 7th grade. Other classes are tracked by ability level as well. An open house is held in November. (This school is featured in New York City\'s Best Public Middle Schools. Pamela Wheaton, 2002, updated by Catherine Man, October 2003)

About the students

Enrollment
802
Asian
22.1%
Black
1.4%
Hispanic
31.4%
White
44.5%
Other
0.6%
Free or reduced priced lunch
80%
Students with disabilities
19%
English language learners
25%

About the school

Shared campus?
No
This school is in its own building.
Uniforms required?
Yes
How crowded? (Full is 100%)
104%
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Attendance

Average daily attendance
95%
94% Citywide Average
How many students are chronically absent?
11%
19% Citywide Average

Is this school safe?

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained at this school?
59%
75% Citywide Average
How many students think bullying happens most or all of the time at this school?
31%
25% Citywide Average
How many students say they feel safe in the hallways, bathrooms and locker rooms?
79%
85% Citywide Average
How many teachers say their students are safe outside around this school?
100%
84% Citywide Average
How many students say most students treat each other with respect?
32%
46% Citywide Average

About the leadership

Years of principal experience at this school
5.6
6.4 Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
80%
79% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal has a clear vision for this school?
89%
86% Citywide Average
How many teachers trust the principal?
85%
79% Citywide Average

About the teachers

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
56%
78% Citywide Average
Teacher attendance
97%
96% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
84%
79% Citywide Average
How many teachers think the staff collaborate to make this school run effectively?
76%
85% Citywide Average

Do parents like the school?

How many parents responded to the school survey?
42%
59% Citywide Average
How many parents say they are invited to visit classrooms?
75%
79% Citywide Average
How many parents say this school offers enough courses, activities and services to keep their children interested in school?
86%
84% 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?
40%
39% Citywide Average
How many students scored 3-4 on the state ELA exam?
51%
40% Citywide Average

Arts offerings

This school has 4 dedicated spaces for Music, Theater, Visual arts, and an Auditorium
This school has 3 licensed arts teachers in Music

Engaging curriculum?

How many students say this school offers enough programs, classes and activities to keep them interested?
77%
72% Citywide Average
How many students say they are challenged in most or all of their classes?
54%
55% Citywide Average
How many students say the programs, classes and activities here encourage them to develop talent outside academics?
67%
70% Citywide Average

Are students prepared for high school?

Accelerated courses offered for high school credit
US History, Algebra I, Living Environment
How many 8th graders earn high school credit?
20%
28% Citywide Average
How many graduates of this school pass all their classes in 9th grade?
94%
87% Citywide Average
What high schools do most graduates attend?
Fort Hamilton HS, HS of Telecommunication Arts and Technology, and Brooklyn Technical HS
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

How does this school serve English Language Learners?

This school offers Transitional Bilingual Education in Chinese.
This school offers Dual Language classes in Arabic.
How many English language learners score 3-4 on the State ELA exam?
3%
7% Citywide Average
How many former English language learners score 3-4 on the State ELA exam?
25%
18% 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
1.91
1.9 Citywide Average
Average math score for self-contained students
2.18
2.2 Citywide Average
Average ELA score for ICT students
2.18
1.9 Citywide Average
Average ELA score for self-contained students
2.25
2.2 Citywide Average
Average math score for SETSS students
1.9
2.3 Citywide Average
Average ELA score for SETSS students
2.36
2.3 Citywide Average
How many students say that students with disabilities are included in all activities?
65%
69% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school offers enough activities and services for their children's needs?
88%
84% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school works to achive the goals of their students' IEPs?
93%
89% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say they are satisfied with the IEP development process at this school?
92%
87% Citywide Average
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