P.S. 452

Grades Pre-K, K-5
Staff Pick
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What’s Special

Music and dance in almost every grade

The Downside

Some large classes

Our Review

Opened in 2010 to ease overcrowding on the Upper West Side, PS 452 has quickly become one of the best schools in the district. Principal David Scott Parker, former assistant principal at nearby PS 199, has built a school with a thoughtful approach to writing, math, social studies, science and the arts.

The National Dance Institute, a nonprofit organization, offers weekly classes to every student in grades k-4. Music is woven into history and geography lessons; children learn why one part of the country gave birth to bluegrass, another to jazz and blues. Children not only sing in the chorus and learn to play instruments, but they also learn about the physics of sound.

In every class we visited, children seemed happy and engaged in interesting projects. Children move efficiently and quietly from one activity to another, with little wasted time. There's a tolerance for quirky kids: A child who has trouble sitting on the floor may sit on a wiggle seat (an inflated cushion that allows him to wobble without distracting others) or be assigned active tasks such as wiping down tables or taking the attendance sheet to the office.

Like PS 199, PS 452 has a very active PTA that raises a substantial budget to pay for teaching assistants in some classrooms, periodically, as well as extra arts programs. "Almost everything we have that sparkles comes from the PTA," Parker said. Almost every classroom has two adults, including teachers, teaching assistants, teachers aides and student teachers from Teachers College.

Also like PS 199, PS 452 has a well-developed writing program as part of Teachers College Reading and Writing Project. Children's work we saw posted was quite sophisticated, including persuasive essays (with topics such as Trains are the best form of transportation, and Dogs are better than cats) and literary essays analyzing character development in picture books. The Everyday Math Program, developed by the University of Chicago, encourages children to understand the conceptual foundations of math.

Social studies and science are integrated in thematic units such as the bridge study in which children learn the history of how the Brooklyn Bridge was built and the science of what makes bridges stand up. Children make paper models of skyscrapers with the help of Salvadori, a nonprofit group, that offers lessons in architecture and engineering.

In fifth grade, children have one teacher for math and science and another for English and social studies. The arrangement allows teachers to specialize in their subjects and has the effect of putting more emphasis on math and science than many elementary schools manage.

The school shares the William OShea Complex, a former junior high school, with The Anderson School and MS 245 The Computer School. PS 452's spacious, sunny rooms are well-equipped with colorful rugs, classroom libraries, blocks and book bags. [PS 452 is now located at 210 West 61st Street]

In 2016, the administration proposd moving the school to the building that houses PS 191 at 210 West 61st Street, if that school moves, as some have proposed, to a new building nearby. Parker said the plan would allow PS 452 to expand and serve more children, but some parents objected, saying their children could no longer walk to school.

SPECIAL EDUCATION: A SETSS teacher on each grade may work with individual kids and serve as one of two teachers in an ICT (integrated co-teaching) class part of the day. There are no self-contained special education classes, but there is a commitment to ICT on each grade level, and there are OT, PT and speech services.

ADMISSIONS: PS 452 is a zoned school. (Clara Hemphill and Aimee Sabo, January 2016)

About the students

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

About the school

Shared campus?
This school shares a building with the Anderson School and the Computer School
Metal detectors?
How crowded? (Full is 100%)
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average


Average daily attendance
93% Citywide Average
How many students are chronically absent?
23% Citywide Average

Is this school safe?

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained at this school?
82% Citywide Average
How many teachers say their students are safe outside around this school?
88% Citywide Average

About the leadership

Years of principal experience at this school
7.0 Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
82% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal has a clear vision for this school?
90% Citywide Average
How many teachers trust the principal?
82% Citywide Average

About the teachers

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
77% Citywide Average
Teacher attendance
96% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
85% Citywide Average
How many teachers think the staff collaborate to make this school run effectively?
89% Citywide Average

Do parents like the school?

How many parents responded to the school survey?
65% Citywide Average
How many parents say they are invited to visit classrooms?
85% Citywide Average
How many parents say this school offers enough courses, activities and services to keep their children interested in school?
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?
43% Citywide Average
How many students scored 3-4 on the state ELA exam?
41% Citywide Average

Arts offerings

This school has 3 dedicated spaces for Dance, Music, and Visual 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 ICT students
2.4 Citywide Average
Average ELA score for ICT students
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% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school works to achive the goals of their students' IEPs?
91% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say they are satisfied with the IEP development process at this school?
89% Citywide Average
For more information about our data sources, see About Our Data
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210 West 61 Street
Manhattan NY 10023
Upper West Side (District 3)
Trains: B, C to 81st St-Museum of Nat Hist; 2, 3 to 72nd St; 1 to 79th St
Buses: BxM2, M10, M104, M11, M5, M57, M72, M79


David Parker
Parent Coordinator
Sharon Lustig

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

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