More Schooling

P.S. 196, photo credit: malarchie

In addition to releasing letter grades for all city schools, the Department of Education has also released numerical scores1, thus allowing a direct assessment of how each school in District 14 (Greenpoint & Williamsburg, and picking up bits and pieces of Bushwick, Bed Stuy and Clinton Hill) compares to schools citywide and districtwide.

First, an update on the grades we discussed yesterday. In addition to PS 84 and JHS 126, two other District 14 schools earned a “D”, and one earned an “F”. The “F” went to PS 23 (Carter C. Woodson, Willoughby between Tompkins & Marcy2). The other “Ds” went to PS 16 (Leonard Dunkly, Wilson between Bedford and Lee) and PS 59 (William Floyd, Tompkins Houses, Throop and Tompkins3). PS 84, JHS 126 and PS 23 easily fall into the lowest 10% of schools citywide in terms of overall score4; PS 16 and PS 59 just barely break into the second decile.

Among the “A” schools we missed yesterday are:

the High School for Enterprise, Business and Technology (a mini school located within the former Eastern District High School at Bushwick and Grand)
the Urban Assembly School for the Urban Environment5 (also located in Tompkins Houses, between Myrtle & Park)
Conselyea Prep (JHS, Metropolitan and Manhattan)
PS 157 (Benjamin Franklin, Kent, between Park & Myrtle)
PS 147 (Isaac Remsen, Bushwick & McKibbin)
PS 257 (John F. Hylan, Cook between Graham & Humboldt)

Statistically, District 14 schools come out a little bit ahead versus the citywide numbers. 13 schools in the district score below the citywide median, and 16 score above. The fence sitters are PS 110 (the Monitor school), just below the 50% mark, and El Puente Academy, just above6. Five local schools fall within the top 10% of schools citywide (based on overall score): from lowest to highest, PS 132, Urban Assembly repetitive school, Conselyea Prep, Enterprise High and PS 18. All of the A schools fall within the top 20% of schools (based on overall score) citywide. PS 18 (Edward Bush, Maujer & Leonard) falls within the top 2% of schools citywide based on overall score.

Looking beyond just numbers, what is perhaps more interesting what this says (or doesn’t say) about the debate between between “progressive” and “traditional” schools. All of the top tier schools in terms of this rating (those falling in the top 10% citywide) appear to be progressive or magnet schools. But just below that, still in the top 20% citywide, are a host of more traditional schools. These include the two of three primary schools in Greenpoint (PS 34 and PS 31) and JHS 50 on the Southside.

1.Handily laid out in a spreadsheet [warning: download link].

2.Which I would call Bed Stuy.

3.Also Bed Stuy? That area between Flushing and Myrtle or DeKalb used to have an entirely different name, which escapes me at the moment.

4.Even taking these scores with a grain of salt, clearly the “progressive” parents who pilloried for trying to improve PS 84 these past few years had a point.

5 Repetitive and redundant, no? Interesting, too, that Topkins Houses is home to one of the worst and one of the best rated schools in the district.

6.The effects of grading on a curve: both schools earned a “B”, and yet they fall on either side of the median overall score.