The Department of Education is proposing to re-site and merge Academy of Arts and Letters in Fort Greene with P.S. 305 in Bed Stuy beginning in the 2020-2021 school year. Arts and Letters is an existing un-zoned District 13 school (lottery-based admissions for elementary school) serving students in grades K-8 co-located with the overcrowded PS 20 at 225 Adelphi Street. P.S. 305 at 344 Monroe Street is an existing under-enrolled zoned elementary school serving students in grades Pre-K to 5. P.S. 305 currently serves around 100 students and enrollment has declined by 46 % since the 2014-2015 school year. The merged school that does not have a name yet is projected to have a total enrollment of 665 to 758 students.

What this means for Arts & Letters

  • Arts and Letters will be able to increase enrollment to fill a whole school building.
  • Arts and Letters will serve students in the PS 305 building whose students and staff will become part of the merged school.
  • Admissions policies and priorities will stay the same (open to District 13, 40% of seats apply to FRL applicants). Kindergarten applicants who have a verified sibling enrolled at the merged school will also have an admissions priority to the merged school.
  • Arts and Letters middle school grades continue to be open to students of District 13. Students are admitted to Grade 6 through the middle school admissions process using a screened admissions method, with priority to continuing Grade 5 students.
  • Currently, 94% of students enrolled in P.S. 305 are eligible for Free or Reduced Lunch compared to 22% of students enrolled in Arts and Letters. The merger will create a diverse K-8 option in District 13.
  • There will be a Pre-K program which Arts and Letters currently does not offer. The new Pre-K program will have the same admissions priorities as Arts & Letters.

What this means for PS 305

  •  P.S. 305 will no longer exist as a school option as of the 2020-2021school year.
  • All current students at P.S. 305 and Arts and Letters are expected to attend the new, merged school in Bed Stuy, which will have sufficient space to accommodate these students.
  • For the 2020-2021 and 2021-2022 school years only, students residing in the current P.S. 305 zone who are eligible for FRL will receive priority for 20% of the kindergarten seats at the merged school.
  • Zone lines around PS 305 will be changed in collaboration with the CEC 13.
  • Students living in the existing P.S. 305 school zone will receive admissions priority to their new zoned school in 2020-2021 and beyond. There are a sufficient number of excess elementary school seats at neighboring zoned schools to accommodate all students living in the current P.S. 305 zone.

What this means for PS 20

  • The move will free up a significant amount of building capacity needed for the overcrowded zoned school PS 20 in Fort Greene.

Read more about the proposal at Chalkbeat.