KIPP Academy Charter Elementary School

Grades K-4
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Location

730 Concourse Village West
Bronx NY 10451
Concourse (District 7)

Contact

Phone
718-943-3737
Principal
Natalie Webb/Carolyn Petruzziello

What’s Special

Challenging charter school in new facility

The Downside

Some chafe at heavy homework load, no playground equipment

Our Review

KIPP Academy Elementary School, opened in 2009, has quickly become a sought-after school known for academic success and strong core values. Students chosen in KIPP Academys annual lottery land a spot in a demanding yet nurturing environment where teachers challenge students minds and build good character.

We have a very rigorous approach here, said Founding Principal Carolyn Petruzzielo. The school day is longer, classes begin in August, once-a-month Saturday classes are mandatory, and an hour of daily homework is assigned even on weekends and over holiday breaks. Yet Petruzzielo said she strives for a serene and joyful atmosphere in which kids can excel as they enjoy themselves. Our No. 1 goal is that kids love school, she said.

That goal seems within reach. When we visited on a drizzly fall day, students across all grades seemed to be focused on their work, paying attention to teachers and enjoying their lessons. The school moved into its new building in 2010, a modern, clean, brightly decorated space equipped with the latest technology.

The school is phenomenal, said Thomas Kirby, the father of a 1st-grader. Kirby admits the heavy homework load and occasional Saturday classes can be a strain, but the positives outweigh the negatives, he said. At the end of the day, I wouldnt trade it for anything.

KIPP Academy is located in the southwest corner of the sprawling Mott Haven Educational Campus. The elementary school takes up all five floors of a wing that has its own cafeteria and gym, so KIPPs youngsters have little contact with high school students elsewhere in the campus. (The exception is at recess, when the football field becomes a shared play space because the campus has no playground equipment. Cones placed at the 50 yard line keep high school kids on their half of the field, but young ears inevitably hear the teens curse words.)

During our visit, classrooms were typically busy places where students sat in assigned floor spots quietly listening to teachers, or huddled in small groups completing assignments. All kindergarten and 1st-grade classes have two teachers. Students also learn music, dance and yoga from a diverse faculty that includes a number of male teachers.

The school enforces a strict discipline policy based on values that spell out SPROUT: serenity, pride, respect, optimism, understand and take a risk. (The latter touches everything from trying new foods to making new friends.) Their character is essential for them to be successful academically, Petruzzielo said. What Petruzzielo describes as a combination of love and logic keeps classrooms orderly. Students who act out are often placed in a thinking chair, where they are asked to think about their behavior and choices. Obstinate students might sit for hours in the principals office reconsidering disruptive actions. Its a place where they reflect. Its not a place for punishment, Petruzzielo said. Our real push is for the kids to do the thinking themselves.

KIPP Academy is part of the nationwide KIPP network. Students selected to attend KIPP Academy may attend the KIPP Academy middle school (which starts in 5th grade) and then on to KIPP NYC College Prep High School.

Special education: The two-teacher system for kindergarten and 1st grade is designed to make extra help available for young students with special needs. In the other grades, students can get occupational therapy, physical therapy and other support services as needed, both inside and outside the classroom.

Admissions: KIPP enrolls approximately 90 kindergartners each year. Younger siblings of enrolled KIPP students get priority. Second priority goes to students in District 7 who qualify for free or reduced lunch. In recent years, more than 300 students met this second criteria, so a lottery is held every April to determine which students may attend. (Skip Card, December 2012)

About the students

Enrollment
1103
Asian
0.2%
Black
41.1%
Hispanic
56.8%
White
0.5%
Other
1.4%
Free or reduced priced lunch
86%
Students with disabilities
18%
English language learners
9%

About the school

Shared campus?
Yes
This school shares the Mott Haven Educational Campus with three other schools
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Is this school safe?

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained at this school?
98%
81% Citywide Average
How many students say they feel safe outside around this school?
56%
77% Citywide Average
How many students think bullying happens most or all of the time at this school?
30%
22% Citywide Average
How many students say they feel safe in the hallways, bathrooms and locker rooms?
75%
85% Citywide Average
How many teachers say their students are safe outside around this school?
55%
85% Citywide Average
How many students say most students treat each other with respect?
37%
48% Citywide Average

About the leadership

How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
85%
80% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal has a clear vision for this school?
91%
87% Citywide Average
How many teachers trust the principal?
90%
79% Citywide Average

About the teachers

How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
95%
83% Citywide Average
How many teachers think the staff collaborate to make this school run effectively?
92%
87% Citywide Average

Do parents like the school?

How many parents responded to the school survey?
45%
64% Citywide Average
How many parents say they are invited to visit classrooms?
82%
85% Citywide Average
How many parents say this school offers enough courses, activities and services to keep their children interested in school?
83%
87% Citywide Average
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Engaging curriculum?

How many students say this school offers enough programs, classes and activities to keep them interested?
63%
71% Citywide Average
How many students say they are challenged in most or all of their classes?
57%
59% Citywide Average
How many students say the programs, classes and activities here encourage them to develop talent outside academics?
60%
69% Citywide Average
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

How does this school serve English Language Learners?

How many English language learners graduate in 4 years?
100%
100% Citywide Average

How does this school serve students with disabilities?

Average math score for ICT students
1.89
2.0 Citywide Average
Average math score for self-contained students
2.32
2.3 Citywide Average
Average ELA score for ICT students
1.93
1.9 Citywide Average
Average ELA score for self-contained students
2.15
2.2 Citywide Average
Average math score for SETSS students
2.25
2.8 Citywide Average
Average ELA score for SETSS students
2.14
2.2 Citywide Average
How many students say that students with disabilities are included in all activities?
56%
64% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school offers enough activities and services for their children's needs?
90%
86% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school works to achive the goals of their students' IEPs?
95%
91% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say they are satisfied with the IEP development process at this school?
88%
89% Citywide Average
How many special ed students graduate in 4 years?
90%
84% Citywide Average
For more information about our data sources, see About Our Data
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