P.S. 40 Augustus Saint-Gaudens

Grades Pre-K, K-5
Staff Pick
Marquee homepage

What’s Special

Experienced, dedicated teachers, involved parents & high student achievement

The Downside

High rents in this desirable school zone

Our Review

Many residents view PS 40 as a vital part of their close-knit neighborhood. A local Starbucks features student artwork, and new teachers get an orientation tour of the neighborhood. Several parents said they moved in order to live in the PS 40 zone, where family-sized apartments cost far more than nearby identical units. This popularity has a downside: class sizes, once enviably small, are now at the New York City average, and larger than average in some grades.

Students perform at high levels, and the administration has an open-door attitude that fosters a positive vibe. Teachers have 10 years of experience on average and are by many accounts unusually committed. "They come early. They stay late. They collaborate with each other over lunch," said Susan Felder, who has been principal since 2004. Parents approached outside the building one morning called teachers "well organized," "unbelievable," knowledgeable," "bright" and "terrific."

The staff is also open to continued learning. Teachers in an already strong literacy program receive about 20 visits a year from a coach at the respected Teacher's College Reading and Writing Project at Columbia University. "It's lifting the level of work," said Felder.

Engage NY, a website designed to help with the shift to Common Core, has been beneficial in strengthening math instruction, say staff and parents. "We want them to know math facts but also teach them to think," said Felder. For their part, parents seem pleased there is more attention to quick recall of math facts and less working-it-out-through games. Mala Mosher, parent of both a PS 40 graduate and a current 4th grader said, "My older daughter was very well prepared for middle school, but the math is even better now."

In music, art and physical education classes we saw long-time teachers exude the kind of self-assurance that makes teaching look like a joy. Additionally, every year kids enjoy a special arts residency paid for by parents, ranging from circus arts from Marquis Studio for the littlest ones to dance for the older ones. Children study computer skills in media literacy classes. 

Students come from a diverse range of backgrounds, although not as ethnically diverse as some parents we spoke to outside the school said they'd like. Rezoning has made it a little more diverse, Felder said. 

PS 40 takes up the bottom three floors of a historic five-story building shared with the selective Salk School of Science, a middle school to which about eight PS 40 5th graders are admitted each year. Most 5th graders attend MS 104 Simon Baruch and School of the Future; a few choose Clinton, Lab, Quest to Learn and others.

The school has an attractive library, cozy seating and a modern computer lab. It's also plagued by balky plumbing and a dispiriting amount of clutter due to lack of storage space. Recent steps to improve the physical plant include installation of bright new tiles in the cafeteria, a lovely teacher's workspace and a larger science lab.

The Parent Teacher Association sponsors an after school program in partnership with Wingspan Arts. Clubs and activities last until 6 pm.

Special education: Each grade has integrated co-teaching (ICT) classrooms where students with special needs are mixed with general-education students. Kids who need extra help can also work with tutors.

Admissions: Neighborhood school. At the time of our 2014 visit there was one full-day pre-k class comprised entirely of siblings who already attend PS 40. (Lydie Raschka, October 2014; updated by phone August 2016)

About the students

Enrollment
650
Pre-K seats
35
Asian
10.8%
Black
2.8%
Hispanic
14.3%
White
61.9%
Other
10.3%
Free or reduced priced lunch
8%
Students with disabilities
17%
English language learners
4%

About the school

Shared campus?
Yes
This school shares the building with MS 255
Metal detectors?
No
How crowded? (Full is 100%)
126%
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Attendance

Average daily attendance
96%
94% Citywide Average
How many students are chronically absent?
5%
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
12.0
6.6 Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
100%
82% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal has a clear vision for this school?
100%
90% Citywide Average
How many teachers trust the principal?
96%
82% Citywide Average

About the teachers

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
92%
78% Citywide Average
Teacher attendance
98%
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?
46%
65% Citywide Average
How many parents say they are invited to visit classrooms?
94%
85% Citywide Average
How many parents say this school offers enough courses, activities and services to keep their children interested in school?
94%
86% Citywide Average
How many parents say their child's teacher helped their child adjust to Pre-K?
89%
98% Citywide Average
How many parents say this Pre-K program helped them consider which elementary schools would meet their childrens' needs?
89%
92% Citywide Average
How many Pre-K parents say their child's teacher gave helpful ideas for how to support their child's learning?
89%
97% 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?
88%
43% Citywide Average
How many students scored 3-4 on the state ELA exam?
86%
42% Citywide Average

Arts offerings

This school has 3 dedicated spaces for Music, Visual arts, and Media arts
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the 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 self-contained students
3.13
2.4 Citywide Average
Average ELA score for self-contained students
3.0
2.2 Citywide Average
Average math score for SETSS students
4.99
2.8 Citywide Average
Average ELA score for SETSS students
3.26
2.2 Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school offers enough activities and services for their children's needs?
86%
86% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school works to achive the goals of their students' IEPs?
93%
91% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say they are satisfied with the IEP development process at this school?
87%
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.

Location

319 East 19 Street
Manhattan NY 10003
Gramercy (District 2)
Trains: L to 1st Ave; 6 to 23rd St; 4, 5, N, Q, R, W to 14th St-Union Square
Buses: M101, M102, M14A, M14D, M15, M15-SBS, M2, M23, M34A-SBS, M9

Contact

Phone
212-475-5500
Principal
Susan Felder
Parent Coordinator
Juliette Knight

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

You may also like …

P.S. 116 Mary Lindley Murray

210 East 33 Street
Manhattan, NY 10016

PS 340, Sixth Avenue Elementary School

590 Sixth Avenue
Manhattan, NY 10011