MS 936 Arts Off 3rd
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Music, theater, dance, visual arts
New untested school
Founded in fall 2020, MS 936 “Arts off 3rd” (referring to its location off 3rd Avenue) offers an ambitious arts program in a well-equipped building, in addition to the usual core academic classes. Arts off 3rd is the home of the District 20 Band and the 3rd Avenue Players, a new theater program. The Players meet twice a week after school, according to the school website.
Students at Arts off 3rd must choose a preference or “major,” from among three broad categories: Music (instrumental: concert & jazz bands, strings, woodwind, percussion) or chorus; Theater (acting, singing, dancing); and Visual arts (ranging from pottery and digital arts to drawing and painting). Teachers also strive to weave art into academic classes. In the Virtual Enterprise program, for example, students develop a small business plan with the use of technology and visual arts.
The Mafalda DiMango Complex, named after a long-time community leader and education activist in D. 20, boasts a dance studio, theater, art studio, library/media center, science labs, and a paved schoolyard with climbing equipment and a track. Plenty of light streams in through windows that offer great city views. The school shares the complex with MS 936 D75 Inclusion Program, for students with serious disabilities. See pictures of the building on the school website and Instagram account.
The school is also equipped with wireless access, laptop carts for students, Mac computers and printers, Google Suites with full remote learning capabilities and SmartBoards in every room.
Various clubs listed on the website include a newspaper club, introduction to coding, respect for all (gay-straight alliance) and reading through the arts, among others.
Principal Donna Nastasi has been in the field of education for more than two decades years, according to a biography on the school website. She has worked with grades from 4th through 8th. Her most recent administrative experience was at McKinley Intermediate School, where she served as an assistant principal of the 8th grade and was in charge of the Arts and ENL (English as a New Language) departments.
Admissions: Open to students and residents of District 20 by lottery. (Lydie Raschka, January 2021)
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Brooklyn, NY 11220