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P.S. 38 The Pacific School

Grades: Pre-K, K-5
450 Pacific Street
Brooklyn NY 11217
Phone: 718-330-9305

Our Insights

What’s Special

Great arts, spacious building & playground; small classes, especially in G&T

The Downside

New principal needs time to mend divisions within school

PS 38 has a clean, spacious building with large, airy classrooms and entire rooms for blocks, LEGO play and a sophisticated STEM lab. Its enrollment has increased in recent years, but it is still one of the few schools in District 15 that usually has room for children outside the zone and even outside the district.

Located just off increasingly trendy Atlantic Avenue, near the new Barclay Center Arena, PS 38 serves an economically diverse community that includes residents of one-family brownstones to those who live in public housing. PS 38 makes the most of its accessible location near most subway lines, and works with numerous arts organizations including nearby Mark Morris Dance Center. Children learn violin, steel pan drumming, and African dance.

"There's a warm and lovely environment here and it's a good fit for our family," said a mother of two who says she spends a "good chunk of time" at the school. "I love the diversity of it. All my kids have felt welcome and comfortable here from the first day."

A district gifted and talented program is housed at the school. G&T classes are small and there is usually room for children from other districts. Parents say they are well-integrated with the general education classes, although G&T classes tend to have far fewer children who qualify for free lunch than the rest of the school. School PTA officers mostly come from the G&T population.

Unlike its uber-progressive neighbor, PS 261, PS 38 has some of the trappings of a traditional school. There is no talk about "opting out" of test tests. The school's Parent Handbook, praises "spiffy dressers" and suggests that parents might send their sons to school wearing ties and that it is "nice to see girls in dresses or skirts as often as possible." Fifth graders have a prom

Built to accommodate 820 students, enrollment hovers around 550, but is on the rise with the expansion of the pre-kindergarten program. Many families choose the school for its vibrant pre-kin a corridor of seven classrooms that lead out into a private playgroundbut not all stay for the older grades. There are four kindergarten classes.

Four-year-olds illustrated simple addition problems with cut-outs of different colored fish and learned how to measure by making applesauce. Lessons are frequently based upon seasons and what the children want to learn. In January, a lesson plan was based upon the polar bear.

Pre-k parents come in to read on "mystery reader Fridays," a surprise to their own children. A mother who moved to the school mid-year said. "So far the school is better than the private school we paid for in North Carolina. There are class pets which is pretty cool and the teachers are friendly and so smart."

Pascale Pradel, former assistant principal of the popular nearby PS 107, was named principal in 2018, replacing Yolanda Ramirez, who had been at the school since 2006. There was considerable friction between the previous principal and some of the staff, and parents had complained to district officials about divisions within the school. "Hopefully Ms. Pradel will rise to the challenge of bringing the many communities together and be a successfull unifier," a parent wrote on the InsideSchools website.

Students go on frequent field trips; beginning with neighborhood walks for the youngest children; older ones have sleepovers at the Intrepid, Club Getaway, the Natural History Museum Club Getaway and go on far-flung trips to the Museum of African American History in Washington, DC, and to Disney World in Florida, paid for by individual parents. Scholarships are available, but not all parents choose to send their children on the overnight trips or can afford them, a school official said.

The most frequent middle school choices are MS 442, School for International Studies and MS 51.

AFTER SCHOOL: The YMCA offers a free program. The PTA runs fee-based enrichment activities including French, chess, fencing, science, and piano lessons among others.

SPECIAL EDUCATION: PS 38 has self-contained classes in every grade. There are no team-teaching classes.

ADMISSIONS: Neighborhood school. There is usually room for students from outside the zone. "If you want to be here, we'll find a way," said Parent Coordinator Hassan Salaam. Citywide test for entrance to the gifted program. Many G&T students come from outside of the district. (Pamela Wheaton, pre-k tour, January 2017, updated with new principal 2018)

Read more

School Stats

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

Is this school safe and well-run?

From the 2020-21 NYC School Survey

How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
86% Citywide Average

From the 2019-20 NY State Report Card

How many students were suspended?
0% Citywide Average

From this school's most recent Quality Review Report

Are teachers effective?

From the 2020-21 School Quality Guide

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
86% Citywide Average
Years of principal experience at this school

How do students perform academically?

From the New York State 2021 -22 Assessment Database

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?
50% Citywide Average

What is the Pre-K like?

From the NYC Program Assessment (CLASS and ECERS-R) Database through 2019-2020

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 the 2021-22 Demographic Snapshot

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

From the 2020-21 School Quality Guide

Average daily attendance
92% Citywide Average
How many students miss 18 or more days of school?
26% Citywide Average

From the 2020 School Directories

How does this school serve special populations?

From the New York State 2021 -22 Assessment Database

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

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

Contact & Location


Downtown Brooklyn (District 15)
Trains: F Line to Bergen St; A Line, C Line, G Line to Hoyt & Schermerhorn; 2 Line, 3 Line, 4 Line, 5 Line, B Line, D Line, N Line, Q Line, R Line to Atlantic Ave - Barclays Center
Buses: B103, B25, B37, B38, B41, B45, B57, B61, B62, B63, B65


Pascale Pradel
Parent Coordinator
Hassan Salaam

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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