The school DOESN'T help my kid to prepare for HS at all. They don't have test or any assessment test. There is no academic challenge at all. The teachers give a lot of projects and homework, but never check the work.
My child went to IS89, and was bullied and ill-prepared for HS. Most of the work is done in groups so some kids work and some don't. No textbooks, kids work entirely from handouts with the notes they took in class. Administration is arrogant and difficult to deal with. It is basically impossible to get a one-on-one with your child's teachers in a subject. The truth about this school shows in the test scores - kids coming in at 6th grade are in higher percentiles on the standardized tests than they are when they go out at 8th grade.
Personally, it's a good school. It has a safe neighborhood and is very supportive. However, there's a wide range of intelligence which causes a number of students to get bored. Not many students from I.S. 289 gradulate to a special high school.
Nice school in a safe neighborhood. The school is clean and has good technology resources (laptops,desktops, Itouches) for hands on learning. They challenge you to think critically and deeply about what you learn, but what is being taught is not new or challenging. The teachers focus too much on getting you to think about a topic or piece of information and sometimes there is circumlocution. There is a wide range of "intelligence" which makes learning, for some, harder. Some students need more help than others, resulting in having to split up the class and/or giving different work. When they DON'T split the class there is sometimes a disadvantage to the half of the class that understand, because they have to sit there while the teacher tries to explain to the others. There are a lot of discussions and group work, "turn-and-talk," and such. During collaboration, the certain students do more work/participate more than others. There are a lot of cliques and different groupings among the students. Also, some bullying and fighting occur off and on school grounds.
I am about to graduate from this school and I love it! The teachers do pay attention to kids and there are only some kids who are bullies. In general, this is the best shool ever, in the best environment ever. I usedto get such bad grades in 6th grade, now I get great grades. This school has inmproved me soooooo much! Go 89!