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I.S. 192 gets new school

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Because of the success of the two smaller academies that replaced I.S. 192, the Department of Education has decided to add a third middle school to the same building in September called Mott Hall Community School.

The last eighth grade class of I.S. 192 is set to graduate in June. The two smaller middle schools occupy the third and fourth floors of the campus.

The new 300-seat Mott Hall Community School will share the building with the Urban Assembly of Civic Engagement and Urban Institute of Mathematics.

“The DOE agrees with many of the sentiments expressed that small, personalized environments are leading to better results for your children,” a letter, signed by DOE chief operating officer John White, stated. “We also agree that Urban Assembly Academy of Civic Engagement and Urban Institute of Mathematics have demonstrated success over the last two years. In fact, we believe that this success is attracting more students zoned to your schools.”

The DOE letter, read at a CEC school district 8 meeting on Wednesday, February 11 stated placing a third school in the building will allow the two existing schools to remain small and viable, while drawing in students that may have gone to M.S. 101’s gifted and talented programs or to private or parochial schools.

The scores at U.A.C.E. in Mathematics proficiency for 2007-08 were at 69%, and at 50% in English Language Arts, compared with students around the city or “relative to the city horizon”. U.I.M. had Mathematics proficiency of 82%, and E.L.A. proficiency at 61%, using the same measurement.

The new school’s principal was named at the February 11 meeting as Geovanti Stewart, and he is expected to meet with parents to discuss Mott Hall Community School’s mission.

Nevertheless, parents are concerned that the valuable resources their children now enjoy, such as arts, computer labs, and standardized test preparation, will be diluted as a result of adding an additional school.

“By doing this, the DOE is going to bring back overcrowded-ness to the building,” Lisa Carbone, a parent, said. “Three schools will again be sharing a library, a gym, and a lunchroom. We won’t be able to bring in programs we feel are positive.”

The competing visions for the school building will again be debated in an upcoming CEC meeting inviting parent participation on Wednesday, February 25. The meeting will take place at the School District 8 office at 1230 Zerega Avenue from 6 to 8 p.m.

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CNG: Community Newspaper Group