My child has been in the school since the first grade. Overall I am happy with the school because it provided a great learning environment and the teacher’s genuinely care about each and every child, But there’s a darker side to the school. For parents who have ISAAGNY dreams, MSC is a great school to park your kid in until a spot opens up in your school of choice. The school operates as if is a private school so your child is coddled and primed for entry into that world. The school IS NOT HOSPITABLE TO THE WORKING PARENT.
The parent involvement is out of this world. So much so that it has become very clique-ish. It’s not friendly for working parents, specifically, parents who do not own their “business” or work from home as most meetings are timed at 8:45am. If you do happen to be able to join a clique, if you disagree with the committees head (usually a parent who has a kid in a higher grade as well as a lower grade) you are quickly cut off from the group (taken off emails and left out of meeting invites). One year the school raised a little over a quarter of a million dollars as a result however and why those Type A parents get the principals ear.
Although I’m sure a family of color is not reading this (because the school is so undercover many don’t even know it’s an option in the public school system) I’ll put this out there for families who actually do care about diversity: Diversity is abysmal. Horribly abysmal compared to the community the school sits in. The school shares the building with another school that is close to 100% person of color…yet MSC manages to only have one or two children of color in a class.
My son has been in this school since Kindergarten. First they were claiming he had speech problems (mind you he is the youngest of his class and will always be the last to turn the overall class age). He speaks clearly actually better than some of his classmates. This school has some wonderful faculty but than you have others members who aren't so pleasant. This school is not such a great structured environment. They don't dedicate the time that is needed to better your child's education. Children are expected to pretty much fend for themselves and be able to learn and grasps things on their own. They don't have such a great focus for children to read independently. They are too lay back and their curriculum sucks. With the two years of experience I have had in this school I have to say it has been not only horrible but also disappointing. With all these great reviews and such great involvement from the principal and staff members I feel that my child shouldn't have had all the problems that sprung upon the school year. They should also consider giving workshops were children are taught not to be bullies and should all sign certifications that they won't bully anyone and if they see any bullying going on they will report it and try to intervene. This school is not the best and very disappointing in more than one way.
Our son is in 5th grade. My wife went to UC Berkeley and I went to Harvard and a NYC private school. We are tremendously impressed with MSC. The teachers are extremely talented and fully engage the children in learning. Our child was inspired to become quite the reader. He has done very well on standardized tests. I was informed by a New York Times education columnist that the program is the same as that at "gifted and talented" schools. The school fosters a caring and inclusive environment. Each year one of the three classes is a mix of typical children and children with non-cognitive special needs. Recent changes include a terrific new principal. Most students are staying on through 8th grade. Many parents donate to supplement the school budget.
I am a new parent in the school in second grade after leaving private school. So far we are thrilled! The school has been warm and welcoming, the other familes are incredibly engaged and interesting. So far the academic component has been on par with our private school experience but culturally the diversity in terms of race, class and differing physical abilities has already been a huge benefit for my son's learning experience.
Having just received the results of the state wide tests for 2013 that were the most rigorous tests to date, we were elated that our two children who have been at MSC for 5 years got very high marks. We attribute this to the excellent instruction which prepared them for the new "common core" standards. As a parent I have to say that I really appreciate the parent community which is full of worldly, creative, motivated and well rounded individuals. We feel especially fortunate to have such a nurturing and challenging environment for our children.
i have a first grader and 3rd grader at MSC and its really a great school. i have looked at a few of the negative reviews and I find them puzzling given that I have never encountered a parent that seemed anything other than thrilled with the school. Maybe they are in upper grades or just got very unlucky with a teacher. We are very discerning parents in terms of academic rigor and I would comment that its a tad lax on that front, but its nothing that you cannot make up for easily at home. Bottom line, its a happy, well-run school with great teachers. In K through 4th grade, that is really what you want, and the fact that you drop off and pick up from the classroom is so massive since the teachers interact with parents and caregivers constantly, and its easy to foster good relationships.
I recently toured this school based on a recommendation of a friend whose son goes here. Based on my tour and my friends own happiness with the school, I'm considering sending my child there for middle school. I was quite happy with the Principal and Staff who answered all my questions and those of the other parents. The tours were lead by parents whose children currently attend the school. This gave me and the other parents on the tour an opportunity to speak to a parent who currently has a child in the school. No question was off limits. I also reviewed the school's State test scores, which show that compared to other schools in the area the school does well. My advice to any parent considering this school or any other school for their child is to do a tour, speak to other parents, review the state tests and tour other schools in the district to compare. Only by doing that will you be able to make a good choice on which school is right for your child. While I did read the comments and respect people's opinion's. I don't feel that they tell the whole story about the school. Not every school is right for every child. For me this school is right for my child.
I used to attend MSC back in the 90's and It left me very unprepared for Middle school. I used to attend it back when the location was on 110th St. We used to knit, sit on rugs and have no strong academic challenges. I was very unprepared after i left the school, Hopefully now it has changed.