Fact Sheet: Proposed Phase-out and Replacement of P.S. 073 Thomas S. Boyland (23K073)
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To read a transcript of this hearing, click here.
We want every community to have high quality school options for families. Every fall, the Department of Education (DOE) reviews the performance of all schools Citywide. Over the past several years, despite the best efforts of the community and the DOE to support P.S. 073 Thomas S. Boyland (“P.S. 73”), the school has struggled to meet basic requirements for student success.
On October 16, 2012, District 23 Community Superintendent Ainslie Cumberbatch held meetings at the school with the School Leadership Team, staff, and parents to discuss what is working at P.S. 73, what needs to be improved, and how the community can work together to better serve students.
Based on an extensive review of qualitative and quantitative data and community feedback, the DOE has determined that P.S. 73 does not have the capacity to quickly improve and is proposing that the school be phased out. The DOE is also proposing that the school be replaced by a new elementary school and a new middle school.
Proposing to phase out a school is the most difficult decision we make. We are proposing to phase out P.S. 73 for because it is the right action for current and future students in this community. If the proposal to phase out P.S. 73 is approved, the school would phase out gradually over the next several years. The phase-out of P.S. 73’s middle school grades would be complete in June 2015, and the phase-out of P.S. 73’s elementary grades would be complete in June 2016.
We hope you share our view that we can—and must—do better for students. The DOE will continue to work closely with P.S. 73 staff and families to ensure that all students receive the support they need to succeed.
Proficiency: % of Students
on Grade Level
Progress Report Grade
Most Recent Quality Review Rating
- The overwhelming majority of P.S. 73 students remain below grade level in English Language Arts and Math. Only 20% of students were performing on grade level in English—putting the school in the bottom 3% of K-8 schools Citywide. Only 28% of students were performing on grade level in math—putting the school in the bottom 3% of K-8 schools Citywide.
- The Progress Report measures the progress and performance of students in a school, as well as the school environment, compared to other schools serving similar student populations. P.S. 73 earned an F grade on its 2011-2012 annual Progress Report, including an F grade for Student Progress, an F grade for Student Performance and a C grade for School Environment. P.S. 73 has a history of low performance, including C grades on its Progress Reports in the 2010-2011and 2009-2010 school years.
- P.S. 73 was identified by the New York State Education Department as a Focus School (NYSED), defined by NYSED as among the lowest-performing schools in the state based on its results with certain high-needs student groups.
- The school’s attendance rate remains below most other K-8 schools. The 2011-2012 attendance rate was 89%, putting P.S. 73 in the bottom 3% of New York City K-8 schools.
Despite our best efforts, the school has struggled
Staff members have worked hard to improve P.S. 73, but even with support the school has not produced adequate outcomes for students. To help the school’s efforts to improve performance, the DOE offered numerous supports, including:
- Assisting the principal and assistant principals in the development of instructional plans and goals for the school year, in support of the school’s Comprehensive Education Plan.
- Assisting the principal in strategizing professional development plans for school staff, aimed at building school-wide capacity and professional growth.
- Supporting school leadership in aligning curriculum to citywide instructional expectations to ensure standards for teacher practice and student learning are high.
- Coaching the principal and assistant principals in the use of classroom observations and feedback to enhance teacher effectiveness.
- Supporting the development of teacher teams and collaboration among school staff to share best instructional practices and increase school-wide professional growth.
- Providing direct coaching for teachers in developing rigorous curriculum, using curriculum maps and rubrics enhance instructional coherence and consistency.
- Training teachers in the use of data tools and data analysis, to build teachers’ capacity to use student performance data to differentiate instruction and target support to struggling students.
- Advising school staff on budgeting, human resources, teacher recruitment and building management.
- Training school staff in the use of student data tracking systems to ensure efficient monitoring of student attendance and academic programming.
- Providing training and support for school staff to ensure efficient and effective tracking of student attendance.
- Working with school staff to monitor suspension and safety incident rates and to develop strategies to improve the school’s culture and learning environment.
What would the proposal mean for current students?
If this proposal is approved by the Panel for Educational Policy (PEP), P.S. 73 would be phased out gradually over the next several years and would not admit new kindergarten or sixth-grade students after the end of this school year. All currently enrolled students would have the opportunity to continue their education at P.S. 73 would be supported through graduation.
Pre-Kindergarten – Grade 1
- The new elementary school will only serve pre-kindergarten, kindergarten, first, and second grades next year and will add one grade per year over the next three years.
- Current pre-kindergarten students should apply to attend kindergarten at the new school next year. These students will have priority for admissions.
- Current kindergarten and first-grade students will have the opportunity to enroll in the new school for first and second grades next year.
Grades 2 – 4
- For elementary students, P.S. 73 will serve third, fourth, and fifth grades next year and will serve one grade fewer each year over the next two years.
- Current second-, third-, and fourth-grade students will continue on to the next grade level at P.S. 73 in September 2013; these students can remain at P.S. 73 through their fifth-grade graduation.
- Current fifth-grade students will have the opportunity to graduate from P.S. 73 at the end of this school year. These students may have applied to middle school through the District 23 Middle School Choice Process. If the student has a zoned middle school, whether or not they have submitted an application, these students will receive priority for a seat in their zoned middle school.
- The new middle school will serve sixth grade next year and will add one grade per year over the next two years. As an additional option, current P.S. 73 fifth-grade students may apply to the new school during the new schools round of the District 23 Middle School Choice Process this spring.
- In its first year, the new middle school will give priority to students currently attending P.S. 73 for fifth grade. For the 2014-2015 school year, this priority will not exist, as all District 23 middle schools and schools offering middle school grades will be fully unzoned and will participate in the District 23 Middle School choice process.
Grades 6 – 7
- For middle school students, P.S 73 will also serve seventh and eighth grades next year and will serve one grade fewer each year over the next two years.
- Current sixth- and seventh-grade students will move on to the next grade at P.S. 73 in September 2013; these students can remain at P.S. 73through their eighth-grade graduation.
- Current eighth-grade students will have the opportunity to graduate from P.S. 73 at the end of this school year. These students should have applied to high school through the High School Admissions Process.
P.S. 73 students who are held over in a grade still offered by P.S. 73 will continue to be served by that school. P.S. 73 students who are held over in a grade which is no longer offered by P.S. 73 will be served by either the new elementary or middle school.
Next school year, P.S. 73 would serve students in grades three through five and grades seven and eight. In the 2014-2015 school year, P.S. 73 would serve students in grades four and five and grade eight. In June 2015, the phase-out of P.S. 73’s middle school grades would be complete. In the 2015-2016 school year, P.S. 73 would serve students in grade five. In June 2016, the phase-out of P.S. 73’s elementary grades would be complete.
Supporting Current Students
The DOE remains focused on helping P.S. 73 students to succeed. If this proposal is approved, P.S. 73 would be provided targeted, customized and intensive supports aimed at the unique needs of the school and its students. This support would be in the areas budget, staffing, programming, community engagement, guidance and enrollment including, but not limited to:
· Helping the school provide students with options that support their advancement, and fully prepare students for their next transition point.
· Working with school staff to foster a positive culture.
· Supporting school leadership in efficiently and strategically allocating resources to ensure a consistent and coherent school environment focused on student outcomes
Plans for New Schools for the P.S. 73 Community
The DOE has proposed to open and co-locate a new district elementary school and a new district middle school in the same building as P.S. 73.
If that co-location is approved, the new elementary school will begin serving grades K-2 in the 2013-2014 school year and add one more grade each year until it serves grades K-5 in the 2016-2017 school year. On November 29, 2012, the District 23 Community Education Council voted to unzone elementary schools in District 23 beginning in 2013-2014. Therefore, the new elementary school will be open to all of District 23.
The new middle school will begin serving grade 6 in the 2013-2014 school year and will add one grade per year until it serves grades 6-8 in the 2015-2016 school year. In its first year only, the new middle school will give priority to students currently attending P.S. 73 for fifth grade. For the 2014-2015 school year, this priority will not exist, as all District 23 middle schools and schools offering middle school grades will be fully unzoned and will participate in the District 23 Middle School choice process.
More information about these replacement schools will be available shortly. We will work with the community to retain partnerships with community-based organizations that are offering valuable services to the school community.
Next Steps and What You Can Expect
In the next two months, the DOE will invite the P.S. 73 community to participate in a joint public hearing co-hosted by the DOE with the District 23 Community Education Council and P.S. 73’s School Leadership Team. As soon as the hearing has been scheduled, we will notify you of the date and also share with you the formal proposal to phase out P.S. 73P.S. 73. During the joint public hearing, community members, including parents and students, will be able to share their thoughts on the phase-out proposal.
The proposals to phase out and replace P.S. 73 will be voted on by the Panel for Educational Policy, which is composed of members appointed by Mayor Bloomberg and the five Borough Presidents, during a public meeting scheduled for March 11, 2013. During this meeting, the public will have another opportunity to comment on the proposals. If the PEP approves the proposals, P.S.73 would not accept new students next school year.
Sharing Your Concerns and Questions
The DOE is seeking your feedback on the proposals. We will record your comments and include them in our Analysis of Public Comments, which is presented to the PEP prior to the vote on the proposals. Please submit your comments at: