The Department of Education has presented two potential approaches for the rezoning of PS 32, PS 29, PS 58, PS 38, PS 261, PS 676 and PS 15 that will go in effect in September 2020 for incoming Kindergarten students and students new to New York City in upper grades. Both approaches include changes to zone lines and admissions priorities for students qualifying for free lunch and multi language learners within this sub-district of 7 schools. The objectives of this rezoning are to reduce overcrowding at PS 58 and PS 29, to fill the new annex at PS 32 and to address demographic disparities within the sub-district. 25-35% of students residing in this sub-district qualify for free and reduced lunch and/or are multi language learners which is currently not reflected in the demographics of the 7 schools.
Approach 1: Individual geographic zones
Schools would continue to have individual geographic zones and each school would set aside around 25 – 35% of its seats for students who qualify for free lunch etc. This plan would significantly decrease the school zones of PS 58 and PS 29 and significantly increase the school zones of PS 32 and PS 15. The school zone would remain the same for PS 261. No individual zone lines have been presented yet and would involve many steps of mapping before final zone lines would be defined if the community overall prefers this approach.
Approach 2: Shared zone (“unzoning”)
Current zone lines between the impacted schools would be removed and a shared zone would be created across the seven schools in the area. Schools would admit students through a choice admissions process that would include a priority for kids who qualify for free lunch and English Language Learners for 25 – 35% of available seats at each school. Students would have entitlement to a seat at one of the 7 schools but not any individual school within the zone.
Further take-aways from the meeting:
- The PS 32 annex opening in September 2020 will feature 436 new seats, designated early childhood and special education classrooms, new library, new cafeteria and new rooftop playground
- Brooklyn New School, PS 133 and The Children’s School are unzoned schools with their own existing admissions priorities and are not included in this proposal
- Greater access to the French Dual Language Program at PS 58 and other dual language programs would be granted from throughout the sub-district in both approaches
- The new admissions plan will be mirrored for Pre-K
- Children who live 1 mile or further away from a school would be eligible for school bus or full-fare Metrocard
- Whether siblings of current students at these schools would be “grand-fathered” in, has not been committed to but traditionally in rezonings they are grand-fathered in (“standard rezoning policies apply”)
- For both new approaches, younger siblings would always have priorities to the schools of older siblings
The Department of Education plans to further engage affected communities over the summer and present a draft proposal in September. The CEC will vote on this proposal before Kindergarten applications open in November so that it can be implemented for students born in 2015 for September 2020.
Affected families with their oldest kids entering Kindergarten in school year 20/21 or later are asked to provide feedback at upcoming meetings in person or per email: