P.S. 122 Mamie Fay

Grades: Pre-K, K-8
Staff Pick
21-21 Ditmars Boulevard
Queens NY 11105
Phone: 718-721-6410

Our Insights

What’s Special

Creative academics in warm and welcoming school

The Downside

Cafeteria lacks a full service kitchen

A large neighborhood school with a sought-after gifted and talented program, PS 122 has a sweet, welcoming tone, strong arts programs, and a focus on civic awareness. In every class we visited, teachers seemed to engage children in interesting projects.

Students take classes in music, dance, and visual arts. On our visit, 5th graders practiced ballroom dancing to prepare for a citywide competition. In a music class, students worked in small groups to learn to play Big Yellow Taxi on the ukulele by ear. Students in grades K-3 participate in the schools orchestra through a partnership with the Little Orchestra Society.

The school emphasizes the importance of reading and writing in all classes. Students read independently, in small groups, and as a whole class, and beginning in kindergarten, they write and revise multiple drafts of a variety of writing styles for different subjects. Thanks to a partnership with the Teachers and Writers Collaborative, students get to work with a poet each year to create their own anthology of poetry.

Near the last stop on the N train in a quiet and residential section of Astoria, PS 122 has two gyms, a library, an art room with a kiln, and a garden. It has a new school yard, a playground, track, and tennis courts. Unfortunately, the school lacks a full service kitchen; school meals are prepared off site and heated in warming ovens before being served in the cafeteria.

The school has long been home to The Academy, a very successful middle school program open to children from gifted classes at PS 85, PS 122, PS 166 and PS 150. Standards are high, and students are given lots of challenging work. At the Academy, 6th graders take the equivalent of a year and a half of math and science; 7th graders learn algebra, and by 8th graders take the Regents Algebra exam. Standards are high, and students are given lots of challenging work. "This school is not for everyone," said Principal Pamela Sabel. "It's very rigorous."

In the past, most non-G&T students attended their zoned middle school, with some attending private and religious schools as well as selective public schools including The Academy. PS 122's G&T students attend The Academy; nearly all Academy graduates attend specialized high schools or selective schools such as Townsend Harris, Bard Early College in Manhattan, and Cardozo.

Middle school students grapple with real world issues in their schoolwork. Every year they participate in the Center for Civic Educations Project Citizen program, which promotes engagement with policy issues through research projects. Past projects have included researching the health effects from cars idling in front of the school building and the honey bee colony collapse disorder. The projects engage children in real and meaningful issues and show them that they can make a difference, explained Sabel.

Extracurricular activities are offered through the Sports and Arts in Schools Foundation, which allows PS 122 to offer fee-based afterschool activities such as chess, debate, and sports for all grades.

Special education: The school offers Special Education Teacher Support Services (SETSS), Collaborative Team Teaching (CTT) classes, and self-contained classes for students with special needs. There is a special education resource room where students can get individual and small group attention.In grades K-2 there are self-contained ELL classes. In the upper elementary classes, ELLs are integrated into the general education classroom and receive extra support as needed from the ESL teacher.

Admissions: Zoned elementary school. Admissions for the district G&T program begins in kindergarten, and admittance is based on the citywide assessment process. For The Academy, seats are filled in grade 6 from schools in District 30, including PS 122 and PS 150, with remaining seats filled through the competitive selection process based on a combination of factors that make up a "composite score"the final 4th grade report card counts for 35 percent, state tests 35 percent, student performance indicators 20 percent and attendance ten percent. Students in the elementary G&T program at PS 122 may continue on to The Academy. (Pauline Zaldonis, February 2013; admissions updated January 2015)

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 2019-20 NYC School Survey

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained at this school?
72% 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?
50% 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?
1% 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?
78% 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?
45% Citywide Average
How many middle school students scored 3-4 on the state reading exam?
50% Citywide Average

From 2021 Middle School Directory

What high schools do most graduates attend?
The Bronx High School of Science, Stuyvesant High School, and Brooklyn Technical High School
Accelerated courses offered for high school credit
Spanish,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
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 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


Astoria (District 30)
Trains: N Line, Q Line to Astoria - Ditmars Blvd
Buses: Q100, Q69


Anna Aprea
Parent Coordinator
Judith Milo

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.


  • Is this your school? Please post any news, updates, events, changes, or other information!
  • We welcome questions, open discussions, and disagreements but comments with personal attacks, rude language, or those with seemingly malicious intent will be deleted.
  • Very long comments, those that contain links, or repeat comments may be blocked by our spam filter.
  • Problems? email us at [email protected].
  • Users must comply with our Terms of Use.