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M.S. 250 West Side Collaborative Middle School

Grades: 6-8
735 West End Avenue
Manhattan NY 10025
Phone: 212-866-6313

Our Insights

What’s Special

Small school, small class size & field trips

The Downside

Progressive approach may not work for everyone

A tiny middle school housed on the top floor of PS 75, West Side Collaborative believes in small class size and small group work. “Smaller means we get to know kids one-by-one, by name,” said parent coordinator Beatrice Rodriquez. “We nurture them.” 

During a “science-immersion week” in May, students may dissect animals, examine DNA under a microscope, and launch homemade rockets in Central Park. Instead of attending regular classes, they visit green markets, the zoo, a planetarium or other science-related destinations. 

Students create their own websites and build portfolios of their work. Instead of traditional parent-teacher conferences,teenstake the lead in discussing their progress with their parents. And students are not expected to be completely silent in class. “Discussions get heated because they are becoming independent, and they verbalize what they’re feeling in a passionate manner,” Rodriquez said.  

Instead of textbooks, lessons draw from a variety of sources, for example, during a unit on the Holocaust, 8th graders saw a film and invited a Holocaust survivor in to speak. During a walking tour of Harlem, as part of a study of the Harlem Renaissance, students lunched at Sylvia’s Restaurant to taste its famous soul food. 

While teachers are enthusiastic and uniformly recommend the school to parents, the progressive approach may not work for everyone. A Department of Education evaluation called the Quality Review said for some, the group work was too easy; for others, too hard. 

Students with disabilities and English language learners in particular need “appropriate instructional supports,” the Comprehensive Educational Plan (CEP) says. Teachers observe each other and give each other feedback on lessons, to improve instruction, according to the CEP. 

Teachers tutor students who need extra help during lunch, Rodriquez said. About three weeks before report cards go home, students receive a “draft” report card and, in the interim, with help from a coach, they have a chance to catch-up and possibly boost their grade. 

Most students arrive in 6th grade with weak reading and math skills, and classes are frequently split into groups of four or six teens with extra adults to assist. For stronger students, the school has small honors classes in English and math, and Regents-level algebra and Living Environment classes. 

West Side has a partnership with Wingspan Performing Arts. They work with students to write scripts, perform sketches and choreograph dance routines. Broadway stars visit the school and students get free tickets to shows. 

Sixth-graders are not allowed to go off campus for lunch, but 7th and 8th graders may earn the privilege and about 80 percent do. Hands in 4 Youth runs a free after school program at the school.

Admissions: The school draws families from across the District 3, who often hear about it by word of mouth from happy alums. (Lydie Raschka, web reports and interview, April 2019) 

 

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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?
100%
75% Citywide Average
How many students say they feel safe in the hallways, bathrooms and locker rooms?
85%
82% Citywide Average
How many students think bullying happens most or all of the time at this school?
59%
52% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
100%
82% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
100%
81% Citywide Average

From 2017-18 NY State Report Card

How many students were suspended?
1%
3% 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?
89%
75% Citywide Average
Years of principal experience at this school
5.4

How do students perform academically?

From 2018 State ELA+Math Results Summary

How many middle school students scored 3-4 on the state math exam?
17%
37% Citywide Average
How many middle school students scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
23%
42% Citywide Average

From 2018 Middle School Directory

What high schools do most graduates attend?
Frank McCourt High School and Life Sciences Secondary School

From 2018-19 School Quality Guide

How many 8th-graders earn high school credit?
17%
32% Citywide Average

Who does this school serve?

From 2018-19 Demographic Snapshot

Enrollment
162
Asian
1%
Black
37%
Hispanic
49%
White
8%
Other
5%
Free or reduced priced lunch
70%
Students with disabilities
30%
English language learners
7%

From 2018-19 School Quality Guide

Average daily attendance
91%
93% Citywide Average
How many students miss 18 or more days of school?
27%
23% Citywide Average

From 2018 School Directories

Uniforms required?
No

How does this school serve special populations?

From 2018 State ELA+Math Results Summary

How many students with disabilities scored 3-4 on the state math exam?
12%
14% Citywide Average
How many students with disabilities scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
12%
15% Citywide Average


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

Contact & Location

Location

Upper West Side (District 3)
Trains: 1 Line, 2 Line, 3 Line to 96th St
Buses: M104, M106, M11, M5, M7, M86-SBS, M96

Contact

Principal
Novella Bailey
Parent Coordinator
Beatrice Rodriguez

Other Details

Shared campus?
Yes
This school shares the building with PS 75
Uniforms required?
No
Metal detectors?
No

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