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Middle School High School

P.S. 316 Elijah Stroud

Grades: Pre-K, K-5
Staff Pick
750 Classon Avenue
Brooklyn NY 11238
Phone: 718-638-4043
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Our Insights

What’s Special

Piano, violin and Shakespeare

The Downside

Some teachers feel the strain of change

This neighborhood school offers an exhaustive list of extras including piano, dance, chess, computer coding, debate, yoga and gardening. Pre-kindergartners study violin. Fourth-graders write and produce a drama based on a Shakespeare play. Several big performances bring everyone together in the auditorium each year.

Three pre-kindergarten classes are equipped with blocks, dress-up corners, and hands-on math and science activities. A gifted and talented class opened in 2013 with kindergarten and will grow each year. There are small classes for bright kids with autism.

In this gentrifying Prospect Heights neighborhood, PS 316 serves mostly longtime local families, some of whom are the offspring of former students. Parents say they are happy their kids have a chance to shine in so many ways. "My son receives engaging lessons from the science, drama, art and music teachers," wrote parent Jennyfer Bagnal in an email. "It is wonderful that these classes begin in kindergarten and continue through all six years."

When Olga Maluf became principal in 2011, the school was struggling with autocratic teaching, raised teacher voices and kids sitting in the hall due to poor behavior. Parents voted with their feet by finding other schools but now they're coming back; enrollment and attendance is up. A former teacher, coach and liaison for city and state school improvement, Maluf quickly brought order, the arts and a knack for prioritizing budgets.The school's quality review went from "developing" to "well-developed" since her arrival.

In some ways PS 316 looks old-fashioned, with kids, in uniforms, walking in boy and girl lines, and banners proudly extolling the school's accomplishments. We saw workbooks open to the same page, which may mean some kids are not working at a level that's just right for them. But we also heard meaty conversations between teachers and kids, and saw teachers pause long enough to give kids time to formulate answers. Most teachers routinely defined big words.

Teachers have trained in a technique called VTS (visual thinking strategies), to learn better questioning techniques. The school is piloting C8 Activate, neurological brain training from Yale University. In this program children work on computers and in the gyma kind of "cross training"to strengthen areas such as attention, pattern recognition, memory and the ability to block out distractions. Maluf is a big believer in resiliency. "The harder you work the better you become," she said.

The music and science programs are particularly strong. The lower school science teacher surveys frogs in the wild in his spare time, bringing knowledge back to the kids. He has students conditioning their pet fish by shining a red light at feeding time. The science department has its own website.

There is a lot going on and some teachers multitask: The music teacher is also the basketball coach, and the science teacher is also a drama coach. The school is working to become an International Baccalaureate program, offering a rigorous course of study accepted internationally, which requires a lot of teacher input and training. Although the majority of the teachers are on board with the changes, some friction shows up on school surveys. Maluf said it's due to growth. "I didn't come in here and say we are changing everything at once," she said. "I had a five-year plan."

Bagnal said that staff members always make themselves accessible. "Never have I seen them dismiss or downplay the well-being of a child or parent," she said.

About half the students stay in the building to attend Elijah Stroud Middle School and the other half go to a variety of middle schools in the area.

There are two on-site after-school child care programs but nothing for pre-k yet. After-school clubs include music (violin, drums, keyboard), sports, gardening and chess.

SPECIAL EDUCATION: In addition to the NEST program for kids with autism, there are ICT team-taught classes that mix kids with special needs and those in general education in one room. Specialists for speech and other supports each have their own spacious classrooms in which to work with children.

ADMISSIONS: Neighborhood school.(Lydie Raschka, March 2015)

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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?
64%
79% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
52%
81% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
93%
83% Citywide Average

From 2017-18 NY State Report Card

How many students were suspended?
0%
1% Citywide Average

From this school's most recent Quality Review Report

Are teachers effective?

From 2017-18 School Quality Guide

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
65%
78% Citywide Average
Years of principal experience at this school
6.9

How do students perform academically?

From 2018 State ELA+Math Results Summary

How many elementary school students scored 3-4 on the state math exam?
60%
51% Citywide Average
How many elementary school students scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
67%
49% Citywide Average

What is the Pre-K like?

From this school's most recent Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS)

Instruction: Teachers ask kids to explain their reasoning when they solve problems

From this school's most recent Early Childhood Environmental Rating System (ECERS-R)

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 2018-19 Demographic Snapshot

Enrollment
574
Asian
2%
Black
68%
Hispanic
16%
White
11%
Other
3%
Free or reduced priced lunch
64%
Students with disabilities
15%
English language learners
3%

From 2017-18 School Quality Guide

Average daily attendance
94%
93% Citywide Average
How many students miss 18 or more days of school?
17%
25% Citywide Average

From 2018 School Directories

Pre-K seats
54

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?
35%
28% Citywide Average
How many students with disabilities scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
45%
23% Citywide Average


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

Contact & Location

Location

Crown Heights (District 17)
Trains: F Line, S Line to Park Place; 4 Line, 5 Line, C Line to Franklin Ave; 2 Line, 3 Line to Eastern Parkway-Brooklyn Museum
Buses: B25, B41, B44-SBS, B45, B48, B49, B65, B69

Contact

Principal
Olga Maluf
Parent Coordinator
Karen Jenkins

Other Details

Shared campus?
Yes
This school shares the building with Elijah Stroud Middle School
Metal detectors?
No

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

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