I.S. 5 The Walter Crowley Intermediate School

Grades 6-8

What’s Special

Clean, modern building with student-run TV studio

The Downside

Overcrowding

Our Review

IS 5 is a large, diverse school of 1,500 students with classes of 30 students at most. The school occupies a state-of-the-art building equipped with a television-production studio, two cafeterias, music and dance studios, a beautiful library, and well-stocked science labs, and a SMARTboard in every classroom. Principal Michael Dantona, who took over the school in 2009, says that worries about overcrowding have receded, as school enrollment has fallen by 100. [Kelly Nepogoda, fomer assistant principal, became interim acting principal in January 2014.]

In 2010, Dantona started an optional month-long summer school for incoming 6th graders, who come four days a week to take classes in English language arts, math, science, and social studies. Students are placed into one of three academies: science and technology; media and art; and law and humanities. Dantona says that all students work from the same curriculum, but courses are differentiated so that honors classes are more challenging while special education classes are suited to students needs.

Overall, academics are strong and well rounded, and many students (50 in 2011) are accepted into the selective high schools like Stuyvesant and Bronx Science. Teachers try not to use textbooks, focusing instead on group projects that give students a chance to help each other. From our observation of a wide variety of classes, we found the teaching to be engaging and the students remarkably attentive and interested. We watched 6th graders give presentations of their science projects and were impressed with both the projects and the kinds of questions their classmates asked.

Dantona says the schools major challenge is ensuring that its English language learners (ELLs) make progress. Almost a third of the students are ELLs with varied levels of abilities in English: students having just moved to the U.S. have only basic skills; others are ready to advance to regular classrooms. Dantona says that he and his staff are always looking for ways to improve instruction for ELLs, such as taking courses on how to teach using juicy sentences, or sentences that require students to learn complex language rather than just translating simplified sentences. IS 5 also offers extra classes on Saturday, which are attended by some 200 students.

IS 5 offers a wealth of electives and after-school clubs and activities, including sports, chess, drama, dance, a literary magazine, homework assistance, opera club (students get to go to Broadway to watch the dress rehearsal for an opera), the school website, and the television club, which produces the next mornings announcements in the form of a news show.

Special Education: IS 5 offers both self-contained and integrated co-teaching classes. The school shares a building with a District 75 school. The building is handicap accessible.

Admissions: IS 5 is a zoned school and a choice middle school. Most students come from neighborhood elementary schools, but the school has some slots every year for admissions through a lottery. (Tom Jacobs, April 2011)

About the students

Enrollment
1836
Asian
44.4%
Black
1.4%
Hispanic
51.2%
White
2.3%
Other
0.7%
Free or reduced priced lunch
57%
Students with disabilities
16%
English language learners
16%

About the school

Shared campus?
No
This school is in its own building.
Uniforms required?
No
Metal detectors?
No
How crowded? (Full is 100%)
114%
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Attendance

Average daily attendance
97%
93% Citywide Average
How many students are chronically absent?
7%
20% Citywide Average

Is this school safe?

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained at this school?
89%
77% Citywide Average
How many students think bullying happens most or all of the time at this school?
20%
28% Citywide Average
How many students say they feel safe in the hallways, bathrooms and locker rooms?
86%
82% Citywide Average
How many students say most students treat each other with respect?
51%
43% Citywide Average

About the leadership

Years of principal experience at this school
2.8
6.0 Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
84%
82% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal has a clear vision for this school?
96%
88% Citywide Average
How many teachers trust the principal?
86%
82% Citywide Average

About the teachers

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
77%
72% Citywide Average
Teacher attendance
96%
96% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
93%
81% Citywide Average
How many teachers think the staff collaborate to make this school run effectively?
87%
86% 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?
50%
27% Citywide Average
How many students scored 3-4 on the state ELA exam?
46%
30% Citywide Average

Arts offerings

This school has 5 dedicated spaces for Dance, Music, Theater, Visual arts, and a Film Studio
This school has 5 licensed arts teachers in Dance, Music, and Theater

Engaging curriculum?

How many students say this school offers enough programs, classes and activities to keep them interested?
78%
75% Citywide Average
How many students say they are challenged in most or all of their classes?
58%
56% Citywide Average
How many students say the programs, classes and activities here encourage them to develop talent outside academics?
70%
72% Citywide Average

Are students prepared for high school?

Accelerated courses offered for high school credit
Algebra I, Earth Science
How many 8th graders earn high school credit?
20%
26% Citywide Average
How many graduates of this school pass all their classes in 9th grade?
92%
84% Citywide Average
What high schools do most graduates attend?
Forest Hills HS, John Bowne HS, and Long Island City 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 Dual Language classes in Spanish.
How many English language learners score 3-4 on the State ELA exam?
4%
5% Citywide Average
How many former English language learners score 3-4 on the State ELA exam?
21%
14% 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
1.81
1.9 Citywide Average
Average math score for self-contained students
2.3
2.1 Citywide Average
Average ELA score for ICT students
1.87
1.9 Citywide Average
Average ELA score for self-contained students
2.27
2.2 Citywide Average
Average math score for SETSS students
2.31
2.3 Citywide Average
Average ELA score for SETSS students
2.31
2.3 Citywide Average
How many students say that students with disabilities are included in all activities?
51%
67% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school offers enough activities and services for their children's needs?
94%
88% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school works to achive the goals of their students' IEPs?
94%
91% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say they are satisfied with the IEP development process at this school?
93%
90% Citywide Average
For more information about our data sources, see About Our Data
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