Our experience up until the beginning of third grade has been very positive. Great teachers, small class sizes compared to other downtown publics, supportive PTA. Somewhat agree with other reviews that achievement bar could be a little higher.
We have two children at the school and find it a very caring and supportive enviornment. The principal is exceptional and she has a great eye for good teachers.
PS 234 is like no other! the principal and vice principal are strong, compassionate, amazing leaders. the teachers are smart, kind and engaging -- really the best around. academically the school is strong but they also have a wonderful social and emotional component that really makes the kids happy, confident and curious learners.
As a parent of two children at this school, I am happy with the quality of the education they are receiving. I believe all schools have challenges, yet this school has both the support of the administration led by a powerhouse principal, Lisa R., and an active and wonderful PTA. The staff is approachable and open to discussing all types of issues from academic progress, classroom dynamics, as well as social/family issues. I look forward to seeing how the school rises to the challenge of the more difficult state test to further solidify this school as an outstanding neighborhood school.
The school fails to challenge advanced learners leaving them bored, overconfident, and prone to mischief. Most parents who expect their kids to move on to competitive middle schools hire tutors well in advance of the 4th grade state exams. This is a safe but over-rated choice for elementary years.
The school makes you feel like stay forever.i fall in love with this school.the teacher are so loving so carding.i am so happy with this school.what a great school..........:)
We have 2 children in the school and a third who has already graduated and I couldn't be happier about the whole package. We have had consistently passionate, articulate, engaged teachers who approach the evolving curriculum with thoughtfulness and creativity. It's not about rote learning or test prep -- they teach the kids how to be thinkers and keen observers. Looping enables the teachers to really get to know each child and the dynamic of the class. The PTA is unbelievably organized and effective with an incredibly dedicated and involved community. And Lisa is totally approachable and super smart. She and Elizabeth (the asst. principal) know and greet every child every morning so that even though its a big public school, it feels warm and welcoming.
We have two kids and seven years to judge and can't say enought about the quality of the teachers and administration of the school. Challenges are not insignificant, but come from exogenous factors like the population growth downtown, DOE proscriptions, etc. I would put each one of our teachers up against private school teachers; the facilities are fine; the parents and faculty are really engaged constructively. But, the overcrowding is real and I also think that the after school programs are subpar. On balance, however, a great option for people with options, and the school aims to be welcoming to everyone.
PS 234 is a great community, but the achievement bar is disappointedly low when considering the potential of the student body, the families' focus on education & the quality of the teachers. I am the parent of a 5th grader who has been under-challenged for the past 5 years. The school is doing a fine job of helping students who struggle & keeping average students happy enough. However, it does NOTHING for its most gifted students. At times, it feels like it is almost in bad taste (& definitely politically incorrect) to even raise their special needs. In fact, I don't think there is any awareness that gifted students have special needs. Instead, the school seems to function on the pervasive but erroneous notion, 'S/he will be fine; S/he is so smart anyway.' Addressing the distinct academic needs of this population would be a worthwhile challenge/goal for the Principal.
My experience was similar to some of the other posts. While the community and general atmosphere is congenial and welcoming -my son was terribly picked on by a teacher who literally was picking on him in class if front of the other kids and sending him to the office instead of recess for weeks on end. My son was subsequently diagnosed with ADD, but I cannot tell you how many derisive and inappropriate comments I received from staff. I received absolutely no support whatsoever in spite of talking to the counselor and trying to talk to his teacher. Lisa was wonderful (When she was eventually told about the situation) - but she really needs to hold some of her staff accountable.
I have been a parent at the school for several years, with two children attending. I do not feel that the school overemphasizes test scores or even particularly emphasizes them. It is a homogenous community of very lucky children (financially as well as in terms of parent support) that enables them to arrive ready to learn and to obtain assistance if they are struggling. I have perhaps been unusually fortunate in that my kids have only had extremely professional, insightful teachers who completely wow me with their dedication, intelligence and ability teach to several levels at a time. One caveat: The school is overcrowded due to its fabulous rep.
I agree with the last post. Lisa Ripperger is a great principal and I feel she will lead her team back to the quality PS 234 is famous for. My child had a terrible time with a teacher who had no comprehension or understanding of positive reinforcement - she bullied & picked on my son terribly, seriously affecting his self esteem. We're still working on getting past the last year. Other than that - great community and wonderful active PTA. Some staff were great, some very rude. It's a toss - if you get a professional this is an excellent school. In my case -we didn't.
This school is tremendously overrated and has been steadily declining over the years. Lisa Ripperger, the new principal, seems to be making some meaningful changes, however, and has hired some excellent new teachers. Most students do well thanks to parent support and tutoring. Once a down-to-earth, neighborhood school, many of the 'new' parents have an air of entitlement without contributing time and effort to the school. For years, the parent body fought hard to open the wonderful new annex, which has alleviated overcrowding, at least in the short term.
We're fortunate to have such an excellent school in the area, with such concerned, active teachers and parents. The new principal, Lisa Ripperger, is wonderful. However overcrowding is a huge issue and becoming more so. Kids seem happy and school environment is friendly and safe. Very active PTA, great music program, but we lost the computer room and the yard is getting very busy at lunch.
It is a strong school, but extremely overcrowded. Excellent after school program. Very homogenous student population. Way too much attention to test scores. Fine for a child that does not need too much attention. Not enough space or teachers to cover individual strenths of the child. Attention is given to hitting those scores. Small classrooms, no art room, computer room, music room. Not very happy with the arts compared to other schools.
Look, the school is good, but they are downright fanatical about their position as the supposedly best public school in New York State. It's good to be in this school district, but I worry for the children who are relentlessly exposed to such a competitive environment.
Great school-engaged, well-trained teachers. innovative curriculum-private school at a public
Excellent school. Warm progressive atmosphere. Great level of parent involvement. Nice after-school program with diverse and eclectic activities. My daughter attended this school and then the local public middle school and was accepted to styvesant high school (with some help from a kaplan prep course)also, nice pta funded music program.
I think that this is a wounder full school. The teachers great. The kids they pay attention if they feel that the child needs extra help they provide. They will bring it to your attention. They have great music art computer homework-help and some other school after school activities. I feel that this is the best school elementary school for your independent little one ,to start off
Great programs, wonderful facilities, active partents -- a terrific elementary school whose only drawback is its increasing popularity and overcrowding.
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The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.
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