PS 170 Ralph A. Fabrizio School
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Successfully serves a large immigrant population
Class size is large in the upper grades
PS 170 is a solid neighborhood school with a large immigrant population. Two guidance counselors and several English as a second language (ELS) teachers assist the many students who need help with the language, and offer support for social and emotional concerns. The school has seen a rapid rise in enrollment over a decade, especially among the special education population and, to a lesser extent, among the Asian population. Class size is large in the upper grades.
Tony Wu became principal in 2009. Using teacher observations and testing data, Wu has made a number of changes in grade assignments, according to the city's quality review, resulting in better academic performance schoolwide.
New teachers are supported in a number of ways. They meet with the principal once a month and receive ongoing training from an assistant principal and math and literacy coaches in their area of need. New teachers also visit "lab" classroomsa designated classroom on each grade level that serves as a model.
A rich arts program enhances this academically strong school, and includes vocal music, instrumental music, drama and art. The staff includes a full-time science teacher and librarian. The school has SMART Boards and laptops.
In celebration of the wide mix of languages and backgrounds here, the school holds an annual cultural festival. In preparation for the festival, Symphony Space artists teach children dances from Chinese, Brazilian, American and Mexican traditions.
Grades 3-5 participate in an annual science fair, and budding 5th-grade journalists publish articles in the chatty and informative school newspapercomplete with weather reports, interviews, opinion pieces, studying tips and more.
The school's old-fashioned five-story brick building, constructed in 1915, is getting a much-needed five-story addition, which will house additional classrooms, a library, a double-height gymnasium and, to the delight of the students, two new elevators.
Special education: There are integrated co-teaching classrooms in which special education and general education students learn side-by-side and are taught by two teachers.
Admissions: Neighborhood school. (Lydie Raschka, web reports and school data, September 2014)Read more