P.S. 61 Francisco Oller

Grades: 3-K, Pre-K, K-5
1550 Crotona Park East
Bronx NY 10460
Phone: 718-542-7230

Our Insights

What’s Special

Families are welcome

The Downside

Some parents would like to see more hands-on learning

After a decade of falling enrollment things are looking up, at PS 61 Francisco Oller, with a new leader and a fresh start. The neighborhood, too, has undergone a revival that has seen, among other things, the construction of quaint single-family homes with park views and attractive backyards. Crotona Park has evolved into a lovely green space that links the neighborhoods around it, with a restored lake, swimming pool and tennis courts.

NYC school surveys show parents are pleased with the school, and the PS 61 Twitter feed is bursting with photos of fun and educational activities for families, such as a gardening club and a family fitness night with yoga and Zumba. Parents may take English language classes or computer classes at the school. The Cook Shop program brings kids and their parents together to make and eat nutritious meals. 

As a community school, PS 61 partners with the Children’s Aid Society, which runs an after-school program offering math, reading, writing and the arts. Children who are chronically late or absent are picked up and brought to school every day in a program also through Children’s Aid. 

True to its status as a community school, neighborhood people are invited in. The New York Police Department jazz band entertains at assemblies and police officers read books out loud to kids, dressed in full uniform. Children may get their teeth and vision checked at the school.

Marjorie Cutler Sanchez took the helm in September 2017. A long time teacher at PS 38, who has also coached teachers, she quickly earned the trust of teachers and parents, NYC school surveys show. The principal has formed an alliance with the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project at Columbia University, a research-based program that has been shown to boost skills in reading and writing.

Sanchezplans to hire a visual art teacher (appropriate, given the school is named after Francisco Oller, the only Latin American painter to take part in the Impressionism Movement), and to bring in more dramatic arts for 5th grade students, according to the Comprehensive Educational Plan (CEP).

Test scores have a ways to go but are inching up since Sanchez arrived in 2017. On school surveys, some parents say they’d like their children to experience more hands-on learning in lessons. Experienced teachers and mentors work with new teachers to help them improve their practice. The principal added tutoring time to the schedule for students in grades 3 to 5, to work on reading and math skills. Students learning English may meet after school to focus on math problems, in particular to study the academic words used in math, according to the CEP. [photo of children reading from @61public]

Admissions: Neighborhood school.  (Lydie Raschka, web reports, September 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 2019-20 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

From 2019-20 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 2019-20 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 2020-21 Demographic Snapshot

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

From 2019-20 School Quality Guide

Average daily attendance
93% Citywide Average
How many students miss 18 or more days of school?
25% Citywide Average

From 2020 School Directories

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


Morrisania (District 12)
Trains: 2 Line, 5 Line to 174th St
Buses: Bx11, Bx15, Bx17, Bx19, Bx21, Bx36


Marjorie Cutler Sanchez
Parent Coordinator
Vernetta Boyd

Other Details

Shared campus?
This school shares a building with IS 190
Metal detectors?

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

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