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Thread: Q300?

  1. #1

    Q300?

    Hi,
    I live in Bayside Queens and my kid gets 3rd choice Q300. Commute will be a pain. Any active board member has kid at Q300 who may be able to compare to other district programs? How's your experience so far?

    Compare to our district school PS188, I think Q300 will have better "enrichments". However, I prefer strong cores subjects, English and Math. There's no past State test result to lookup the progress in the past few years at Q300. Any idea how are they doing?

    Thanks in advance
    PC

  2. #2
    Based on my rough notes from the Q300 tour:
    "First 8th grade class graduating
    68% received offers from shsat
    92% received their first choice"

    We've received an offer for 1st grade entry.
    Leaning towards accepting, mostly for the peer group + diversity of students.

    I'd be curious to hear from current Q300-parents re: the quality of enrichments.

  3. #3
    I am a parent at Q300, with both a kindergartener and a 3rd grader at the school. In terms of state tests, you do have results for current middle schoolers (95% passed math and 92% passed ELA last year). My daughter's 3rd grade class was the first batch of elementary kids taking the test, and it was a total non-event at the school. In my daughter's words: "the test was baby easy." All the kids I spoke to had the same reaction. But I do not evaluate a school's performance on the state test results. That should be a minimum bar and not a focus of instruction. At Q300, there was no test prep during school hours. An optional after school review was offered twice a week for two or three weeks before the test. We did not participate as I found the review unnecessary. My daughter (and many of her classmates) reads at a Y level. Math instruction covered all 3rd grade material and quickly expanded to 4th grade work. These kids are quick, so the pace of instruction is astronomical. In terms of my kindergartener, at the start of the school year he was reading around level D. He will finish kindergarten reading at level M/N. About half his class is around that level (I believe the highest current level in the class is R/S). These kids are intense and scary smart. My son's writing is also beautiful. In terms of math, there has been a lot of focus on word problems. For example, the kids were asked questions like: at our trip to the zoo, we saw 3 sheep, 5 chickens, and 4 rabbits; how many legs did we see in total? The kids had to show strategies and explain their answers in writing. There's a strong emphasis on higher order thinking. It's really impossible to compare this school to a gen ed one because with a peer group of such quick learners, you can take "core" instruction to such a deeper level.

  4. #4
    @D25Mommy, Thanks for the details, We got our 3rd choice O300 as well, have a couple of more questions,

    1, the school is quite far away from our current place, so thinking to move, do they have school bus? and what are the areas the school bus cover? Is long island city covered?
    2, What are the hours for kindergarteners? do they have after school program? what normally do they have as after school programs? Do parents need to pick the kids up to send to after school programs?
    3, How is the campus like, do they have outside playground?
    4, How diversify the class is?

    May be too many quetions, but thank you very much.

  5. #5
    Q300 kindergartener parent with another rising kindergartener in the fall here:
    - there is a public school bus for those in the vicinity. don't know much about this one. there are also private buses. we're in Forest Hills and use the private option
    - hours roughly 8.20-2.30. Serious Fun is the afterschool provider and they meet in the school.
    - 4 floor building, q300 currently top floor, think they'll expand to 3rd floor as well in next 1-2 yrs. 2 playgrounds. inner courtyard for kindergarteners, then outside one
    - very diverse class not dissimilar from the Queens borough demographic. Relatively larger Asian population vs the other citywides though I think, but also b/c Queens has more Asians.

  6. #6

    Q300: The Progressive, The Privileged, and The Eduspeak

    Child (99) offered a seat at Q300 (second choice).

    Agree with other posters re: Q300:

    - That it still is getting its pedagogic footing.
    - That perhaps it was put together in haste.
    - That any new school needs time to ramp up to establish a track record.
    - That the students are "scary smart."

    Indeed, the last claim belies the school's "progressive" mission - at least by the standards of the progenitor of progressive education, John Dewey, who wrote: "It is the aim of progressive education to take part in correcting unfair privilege."

    Uh oh. Q300 students are the privileged of the privileged, having received seats at the school due to their power of being privileged, i.e., supremely gifted and talented. There is no shame. Rather, this should be exalted. Q300 should revel in its exclusion rather than window dress its website in the gaudy garb of eduspeak and its bromides about inclusion.

    Also, when did so-called progressive schools require uniforms? Is this progressive as conformist? Is this cruel irony? Is this a charter school? Is this a Catholic school? Think about uber-progessive St. Ann's of Brooklyn. Now try and think about alum Lena Dunham wearing a uniform. Didn't think so.

    Q300's acceptance of my child has proven that she has separated herself from the vast majority of her peers. We are making an exclusive choice to send her there. It is the fair thing to do.
    Last edited by Queens Resident; 06-03-2017 at 11:21 AM.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Queens Resident View Post
    Child (99) offered a seat at Q300 (second choice).

    Agree with other posters re: Q300:

    - That it still is getting its pedagogic footing.
    - That perhaps it was put together in haste.
    - That any new school needs time to ramp up to establish a track record.
    - That the students are "scary smart."

    Indeed, the last claim belies the school's "progressive" mission - at least by the standards of the progenitor of progressive education, John Dewey, who wrote: "It is the aim of progressive education to take part in correcting unfair privilege."

    Uh oh. Q300 students are the privileged of the privileged, having received seats at the school due to their power of being privileged, i.e., supremely gifted and talented. There is no shame. Rather, this should be exalted. Q300 should revel in its exclusion rather than window dress its website in the gaudy garb of eduspeak and its bromides about inclusion.

    Also, when did so-called progressive schools require uniforms? Is this progressive as conformist? Is this cruel irony? Is this a charter school? Think about uber-progessive St. Ann's of Brooklyn. Now try and think about alum Lena Dunham wearing a uniform. Didn't think so.

    Q300's acceptance of my child has proven that she has separated herself from the vast majority of her peers. We are making an exclusive choice to send her there. It is the fair thing to do.
    Are you for real? Q300 is a citywide. By definition, it is exclusive because you must test in to be admitted. Clearly, you know this since you had your child take the test. But now you want to criticize the school because it tries to take a progressive approach to education? And you will do so by throwing in the "uber-progressive St. Ann's" THAT COSTS $50,000 per year to show how the school is not sufficiently "correcting unfair privilege"? SERIOUSLY?! You spout about "cruel irony" but see none in your own words?

    And I like the uniforms. They serve a practical purpose (since the school is co-located). The policy is loosely applied, but I'm fairly strict in having my kids wear the uniform because it spares me the drama of the "what to wear" morning routine. If you have beef with the uniforms, don't come to the school. Problem solved. 99% of other publics, or--gasp--St. Ann's, might be a better fit for you. The hypocrisy of someone criticizing a progressive school for not conforming with other progressives is just astounding! Do you seriously not get the irony of your own circular argument?

    Q300 is a public school that must conform to DOE rules and regulations. Within that narrow framework, it tries to be more progressive than other publics. Namely, it focuses on "whole child" development that emphasizes the social as much as the academic (which, in my opinion, is good for scary smart students who can be a bit self-centered). That's where the inclusion part comes in: students are expected to think of, and include, others. The school is also more progressive in its stance on homework and student led exploration. But there is a tension within the school between those parents who want a very progressive approach and those that want the academic rigor along the lines of the other citywides. There has been a switch in administration, and the new principal is re-shifting the balance. Honestly, I get the sense that the school will move in the direction of more academic rigor, with components of a progressive approach left in place where it has proven to work. This may not be what you are looking for (based on your words above). There is a small percentage of "intense" parents who think like you, but I would not say you guys are in the majority. Perhaps you should again revisit your choice because I sense your expectations of the school are wholly unrealistic.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by dadjemmy View Post
    @D25Mommy, Thanks for the details, We got our 3rd choice O300 as well, have a couple of more questions,

    1, the school is quite far away from our current place, so thinking to move, do they have school bus? and what are the areas the school bus cover? Is long island city covered?
    2, What are the hours for kindergarteners? do they have after school program? what normally do they have as after school programs? Do parents need to pick the kids up to send to after school programs?
    3, How is the campus like, do they have outside playground?
    4, How diversify the class is?

    May be too many quetions, but thank you very much.
    1. The Yellow Bus (Free NYC OPT Provided Bus) Serves Astoria, LIC, Woodside, Elmhurst, Jackson Heights neighborhoods.) You can find more bus information with links off to the Official OPT website here:
    https://www.q300pta.net/resources/bus-info/
    3. The school is co-located. If you are attending, you'll be registering at the school. The ES campus has two playgrounds- one you can see from the school website: http://www.q300.org/ or from Google Street View: LINK. Also a playground next door- Athens Park.
    4. The School is pretty diverse, in that there are families from different economic backgrounds. We celebrate diversity as a school. I think that the class could be more diverse, from an idealist standpoint- to directly reflect the NYC population, but I don't think that's the fault of the school.

  9. #9
    Thanks to all the Q300 parents for chiming in with detailed responses.
    I've a few more questions (thanks in advance for taking the time to respond):
    1. Can you talk a little bit about the arts enrichment at Q300? How often do kids have art in a week? Is there a dedicated arts teacher/room?
    2. Do the kids mingle with the other school in the building? (wondering about recess, lunch, afterschool)
    3. How effective is the PTA at fund-raising? Any rough estimates of how much the PTA spends per child?
    4. (specific question to our case) We've received an offer for 1st grade entry. Any idea what we can do to help the child transition from regular K => Q300 1st grade? Curious if anyone here has been through this already.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by West75th View Post
    Thanks to all the Q300 parents for chiming in with detailed responses.
    I've a few more questions (thanks in advance for taking the time to respond):
    1. Can you talk a little bit about the arts enrichment at Q300? How often do kids have art in a week? Is there a dedicated arts teacher/room?
    2. Do the kids mingle with the other school in the building? (wondering about recess, lunch, afterschool)
    3. How effective is the PTA at fund-raising? Any rough estimates of how much the PTA spends per child?
    4. (specific question to our case) We've received an offer for 1st grade entry. Any idea what we can do to help the child transition from regular K => Q300 1st grade? Curious if anyone here has been through this already.
    1. All the grades have music at least once a week. It's a PTA paid for enrichment (as are most of the others). The program is run by the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music. Lower grades have dalcroze/solfage type of instruction. 1st grade also had chorus. 3rd grade played the recorder. I believe the middle school has violin instruction. Visual Art is also once a week and is run by staff from Art House Astoria. The kids studied pastels, watercolors, and all the various art movements. I don't believe there is a dedicated art room in the lower school (space is an issue), but there is one in the middle school. Grades 2 and up also have dance. In the fall, there was a program through Alvin Ailey. In the spring, the kids have been working with a faculty member from American Ballet Theater (who happens to be a parent at the school and is generously volunteering her time and resources). Grade 2, I believe, also studied architecture. This is all in addition to Spanich (twice a week), Technology/Coding (twice a week), and gym (twice a week). One of the K teachers also applied for and received a "mindfulness" grant so both K classes had yoga this year. I believe the program is supposed to expand to the other grades next year. Lower grades also have explorations at least 3 times a week.

    2. Q300 and its co-located school do NOT mingle. The 2 schools share the lunchroom, auditorium, and outdoor recess space, but each school has its own designated times. For example, the other school has lunch from 10:30 to 12:00 while Q300 has lunch from 12 to 1pm. The 2 schools start and end at different times and they have their own staff (I believe the nurse is the only staff member that is shared because Q300 is not yet big enough for the DOE to pay for a separate nurse). I believe this is the typical setup for all co-located schools.

    3. The PTA raises a boatload of $$$$ and is extremely active. I don't know the number per student, but I can tell you that this year alone they have raised close to $200K from the direct appeal, $25K from the silent auction, and tens of thousands more from a slew of other fundraisers. And this is for a school that only has slightly more than 300 students.

    4. I wouldn't worry about the transition. The teachers will fill in any gaps. Socially, I advise that you come to the welcome breakfast in June and the school picnic at the end of August just so your child can make a few friends before school starts. If your child hasn't studied a foreign language, you may also want to download some kind of Spanish app just to get exposed to some of the basics. But the last is not a biggie. Again, the teacher will help to catch your child up to the rest of the class.

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