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Elementary School Middle School High School

P.S. 87 William Sherman

Grades: Pre-K, K-5
Staff Pick
160 West 78 Street
Manhattan NY 10024
Phone: 212-678-2826

Our Insights

What’s Special

Strong teachers bring the city to life with creative projects and trips

The Downside

Relationship between administration and staff could be better

PS 87 has long been one of the most popular schools in District 3, known for its passionate teachers, active parents, and commitment to the arts. Parents chip in to plan fundraisers and help out on the playground, and they advocate for improving the quality of the food.

Hallways are filled with creative and inspired student work. Social studies units begin with the child and expand outward from "me" and "my family" to the neighborhood, city, state, country and world. Kids take trips to the Central Park Zoo, the botanical gardens and area museums. The school has a popular dual language Spanish-English program, designed to make children proficient speakers and writers of both languages.

Alas, the quality of teaching is uneven. Depending on the luck of the draw, your child may get a fabulous teacher—or one who is not ready for prime time. The staff is famous for its independence, or, depending on your point of view, its resistance to supervision. The school had five principals in a decade; one told us she left because some of the teachers acted as if they didn't need a principal.

Monica Berry, principal since 2010, has a rocky relationship with some the staff; according to school surveys, many teachers mistrust her.

That said, nearly all the parents who responded to the survey say they would recommend the school. "In a school this big you are bound to come across a few less-than-impressive teachers, parents, kids," a parent wrote on the InsideSchools website. "The classes are big, lunchroom is crowded, and the auditorium gets noisy—but this is a NYC public school. The experience for kids and parents, I think, mirrors real life. I highly recommend this school for families looking for a well-rounded education in life and in academics."

SPECIAL EDUCATION: SETSS (special education teacher support services) and ICT (integrated co-teaching) classes on every grade level. The school also has speech, occuptional therapy, physical therapy and counseling. 

ADMISSIONS: Zoned neighborhood school. Apply to dual language as a separate program on MySchools. No kindergarten children from outside the zone except siblings have been accepted in the past several years. (Clara Hemphill, web reports and school data, September 2016)

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School Stats

Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Is this school safe and well-run?

From 2018-19 NYC School Survey

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained at this school?
79% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
81% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
83% Citywide Average

From 2017-18 NY State Report Card

How many students were suspended?
1% Citywide Average

From this school's most recent Quality Review Report

Are teachers effective?

From 2018-19 School Quality Guide

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
80% Citywide Average
Years of principal experience at this school

How do students perform academically?

From 2019 State ELA+Math Results Summary

How many elementary school students scored 3-4 on the state math exam?
51% Citywide Average
How many elementary school students scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
49% Citywide Average

What is the Pre-K like?

From the NYC Program Assessment (CLASS and ECERS-R) Database through 2018-2019

Instruction: Teachers ask kids to explain their reasoning when they solve problems
Activities: Children explore art, music, sand/water, dramatic play and more
Language: Teachers talk and listen to kids in a supportive way
Interaction: Teachers ask kids good questions and invite back-and-forth conversation

Who does this school serve?

From 2019-20 Demographic Snapshot

Free or reduced priced lunch
Students with disabilities
English language learners
Pre-K seats

From 2018-19 School Quality Guide

How many students miss 18 or more days of school?
25% Citywide Average

From 2020 School Directories

This school offers Dual Language classes in Spanish.

How does this school serve special populations?

From 2019 State ELA+Math Results Summary

How many students with disabilities scored 3-4 on the state math exam?
28% Citywide Average
How many students with disabilities scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
23% Citywide Average
How many English language learners scored 3-4 on the state math exam?
28% Citywide Average

For more information about our data sources, see About Our Data · More DOE statistics for this school

Contact & Location


Upper West Side (District 3)
Trains: B Line, C Line to 81st St-Museum of Nat Hist; 2 Line, 3 Line to 72nd St; 1 Line to 79th St
Buses: M10, M104, M11, M5, M57, M72, M79


Monica Berry
Parent Coordinator
Jennifer Stark

Other Details

Shared campus?
This school is in its own building.
Metal detectors?

Zone for the 2019-2020 school year. Call school to confirm.

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