P.S. / IS 178 Holliswood

Grades: Pre-K, K-8
Staff Pick
189-10 Radnor Road
Queens NY 11423
Phone: 718-464-5763

Our Insights

What’s Special

Promotes positive interaction between age groups

The Downside

Some teens may prefer a larger setting

PS/IS 178 is a well-regarded, high-performing pre-kindergarten through 8th grade school where the youngest and oldest interact in positive ways, while still maintaining their own identities within one building. The brick building is nestled in the suburban-like neighborhood of Jamaica Estates and spans an entire block.

Middle-school students have their own government, which helps them forge their own identity within the school. All their classes take place in one wing of the building, which the students have decorated with academically-themed murals. Some students tutor younger kids in the elementary school, which helps create cohesion between the younger and older grades. "It's everything from reading to tying shoes," said Parent Coordinator Phyllis Lattimer.

There are small supportive "advisory" groups that meet once a week to discuss academics as well as emotional or social issues that come up in school. One of the school's guidance counselors runs a support group for students with divorced parents called the "Banana Splits."

The school has full-time art, music, physical education, science and computer teachers, and students in all grades are exposed to either art or music each year. Children in kindergarten through 2nd grade learn percussion, 3rd- and 4th-graders learn to play recorder, and 5th-graders learn ballroom dance through the citywide Dancing Classrooms program. The Young People's Chorus works with grades 3-8 once a week. Middle school students pursue their interests through various electives ("talents") that meet during school. A drama club meets after school.

Students begin studying Spanish in the 6th grade, and may take the Spanish proficiency exam in the 8th grade, which most do, according to Lattimer. Additionally, high-achieving 8th-graders have the opportunity to take accelerated courses, which leads up to the integrated algebra and living environment Regents exams.

Principal Jennifer Ambert speaks in calm, even tones and exudes a quiet enthusiasm when describing her school. The small school is like "a private school setting where families know each other," she said. Ambert attended New York City public schools, and as a teacher and administrator in District 27, she piloted a 2D technology program and a literacy program. In an online biography she says she "loves math" and tutored algebra through pre-calculus for many years.

In the CHAMPS fitness program children can play a variety of sports including softball, badminton, volleyball or flag football. A well-attended morning fitness program for grades k-5 begins at 7:15 am. Children take trips to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and, in 8th grade, Camp Mason, in the Delaware Water Gap (see photo from the school's Facebook page.).

A renovated playground has a track, basketball hoops and handball courts, as well as two large playgrounds with climbing equipment.

PS/IS 178 offers after-school test prep for the specialized high school exam, but the neighborhood lacks direct access to the subway, and administrators say the out-of-borough specialized high schools are therefore less appealing than closer schools. Nonetheless, some students attend top schools such as Stuyvesant, Bronx Science, Brooklyn Tech, and the High School for Math, Science, and Engineering at City College. "We usually get someone in all those specialized schools," said the parent coordinator. Those who remain in Queens attend a variety of schools, including specialized Queens High School for the Sciences at York College, selective Townsend Harris, and popular neighborhood high schools, such as Bayside, Cardozo and Francis Lewis.

Admissions: Neighborhood school (Cristin Strining, January 2009; updated by Lydie Raschka, phone interview and school data, September 2014)

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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?
71% Citywide Average
How many students say they feel safe in the hallways, bathrooms and locker rooms?
84% Citywide Average
How many students think bullying happens most or all of the time at this school?
51% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
78% Citywide Average

From 2019-20 NY State Report Card

How many students were suspended?
2% 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?
79% 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?
54% Citywide Average
How many elementary school students scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
50% Citywide Average
How many middle school students scored 3-4 on the state math exam?
46% Citywide Average
How many middle school students scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
51% Citywide Average

From 2021 Middle School Directory

What high schools do most graduates attend?
Francis Lewis High School, and Benjamin N. Cardozo High School
Accelerated courses offered for high school credit
Algebra I,Living Environment

From 2019-20 School Quality Guide

How many 8th-graders earn high school credit?
32% 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

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?
23% Citywide Average

From 2020 School Directories

Uniforms required?

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?
25% Citywide Average
How many students with disabilities scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
22% Citywide Average
How many English language learners scored 3-4 on the state math exam?
24% Citywide Average
How many English language learners scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
16% Citywide Average

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

Contact & Location


Fresh Meadows (District 26)
Trains: N/A
Buses: Q17, Q46, QM1, QM31, QM35, QM36, QM5, QM6, QM7, QM8, S51, S52, S66, S74, S76, S78, S81, S84, S86


Jessica Cruz
Parent Coordinator
Wanda Adams

Other Details

Shared campus?
This school is in its own building.
Uniforms required?
Metal detectors?

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


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