Top 26 Public Elementary School Out-Performers in Brooklyn

Brooklyn is one of the 5 Boroughs of New York City, and is one of the most diverse areas in the US, both racially and socio-economically. If each borough were ranked as a city, Brooklyn would rank as the third most populous city in the US after Los Angeles and Chicago. Brooklyn is co-existent with Kings County, and is the 2nd most densely populated county in the United States. Brooklyn is home to approximately 2.6 million people as of 2019. There are approximately 540 public schools in Brooklyn. This post will highlight some the best elementary schools in Brooklyn.

Previously we published this post highlighting 10 Out-Performing Schools in Manhattan, and we are please to publish this post highlighting 26 Out-Performing Schools in Brooklyn.

To see our ratings of all Brooklyn and New York City area schools, visit our website.

Brooklyn has many highly rated public schools. Our Founder, Tom Brown, is a realtor and his experience has shown that parents who are moving to a new city seek out schools that rate 7 or better. But as it turns out, the ratings are significantly impacted by parent income, not necessarily school quality, and as a result, many schools in Brooklyn are unfairly underrated when parent incomes are lower. Unfortunately these schools are often the most diverse.

We aim to set the record straight when it comes to Brooklyn Schools. There are literally dozens of incredible schools in Brooklyn that rise above the rest, earning our highest ratings while the other guys assign low scores with their biased rating system. Many of Brooklyn’s public school’s are unfairly underrated, and all the real estate search engines display biased ratings that negatively impact Brooklyn schools and their surrounding neighborhoods and communities.

TEST SCORES ARE ONE FACTOR – BUT THEY HAVE TO BE TAKEN IN CONTEXT

The other rating systems out there utilize straight test scores as reported by the Department of Education in their algorithm. They will tell you that test scores are only part of their algorithm, but an algorithm that is partly biased is, well, biased. The reason for this bias is that the largest influencer of test scores, by far, is parent income, not school quality. So what are you measuring if you rank schools by straight test scores? Parent Income. These ratings generally steer people to schools of privilege, and away from schools where the average parent incomes are lower.

That’s why our ratings normalize for parent income, leveling the playing field and shifting focus away from parent income, and towards schools where educators are making a difference. Furthermore, we adjust every school’s test scores to account for each school’s Limited English Proficiency (LEP) and Special Needs (CWD – Children With Disabilities) populations, which is necessary to have a substantive comparison between schools.

You can help move the needle toward widespread recognition of vibrant urban schools across the nation as quality institutions, and take a step towards ending the redlining and segregation that the current ratings perpetuate by retweeting and/or sharing our social media posts:

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Posted by SchoolSparrow on Monday, 29 March 2021

SKIP THIS SECTION IF YOU ARE NOT A DATA NERD!

Here’s how we adjust for LEP/CWD students and parent income. We’ll use data from The Homecrest School (one of the 26 Out-Performers on this list) as an example. 

If you look up any school on our school rankings page, you will find a table labeled “raw data”. This is exactly how the US Department of Education (DOE) reports the data. 

STEP 1: ADJUST TEST SCORES FOR LEP/CWD

For Homecrest, the DOE reports an overall score for the school of 43 (this is the Grade All column in our table). This means that 43% of kids at this school (who took the test) were deemed proficient on the Reading/Language Arts section of the standardized test only.

In the raw data table for Homecrest, we can see that 210 students took the test. We know that 43% were deemed proficient, so we can calculate the total number of proficient students: 210 x 43% = 90.3 total students proficient. Now we will subtract the number of LEP/CWD students that took the test. 210 – 38 LEP students that took the test – 53 CWD students that took the test = 119 remaining students that took the test (these students are not LEP or CWD). The score for the LEP students is reported as “LE10”, which means the score is less than or equal to 10%. To be conservative, we assume the LEP students scored 10% proficient, so 38 x 10% = 3.8 LEP students proficient. The score for CWD students is reported as “19-Nov”. Hmmm. What does that mean you ask?

The data analysts at the DOE should have added an apostrophe before the range of values in Excel, to avoid Excel deciding that the range is actually a date. “19-Nov” is supposed to be reported as 11-19. We average this number to come up with 15% of the 53 CWD students that took the test were deemed proficient. 53 x 15% = 8 CWD students proficient.

Now we can figure out the % of non LEP/CWD students who were deemed proficient at the Homecrest School. 90.3 total students proficient – 3.8 LEP students proficient – 8 CWD students proficient = 78.5 non LEP/CWD students proficient / 119 non LEP/CWD test takers = 66% proficient for non LEP/CWD students. That’s a lot different than 43%.

YES, THERE ARE HOLES

We have made some assumptions to get to this number. We assume LEP students at the highest possible score, we averaged the CWD students. In addition, we assume there are no students that are both LEP/CWD. We’ve looked at the extremes, and we’ve come to the conclusion that although our calculations are not perfect, they are certainly better than just doing nothing to control for the context of the student body, which is what the other ranking sites are doing. They are unfairly dinging schools that have higher populations of these students.

STEP 2: MAKE A FANCY GRAPH

We make these LEP/CWD adjustments for every school in the entire NYC region. Then we plot the overall adjusted score vs socio-economic data for every single public school in the NYC region. This data reveals a trendline that shows the relationship between socio-economic profiles and adjusted test scores. That trendline describes the average or expected overall adjusted score for every school, and schools are graded by the extent to which their actual adjusted score has a departure from their expected score. In that way, we normalize for parent income and shift focus away from economic status towards schools where educators are making a difference.

LEP/CWD ADJUSTMENTS ARE ON OVERALL SCORES ONLY

One final important note: we have not yet calculated adjusted scores for the individual grades. This provides some perspective on the impact and importance of making these LEP/CWD adjustments. For example, looking at The Homecrest School, we can see that the SchoolSparrow ratings for 3rd, 4th and 5th grades range from C to B+. But the overall score gets an A-. This is because the overall score is adjusted for LEP/CWD students while the individual grades are not. However, the individual grades ARE still adjusted for parent income.

IS ALL THIS REALLY WORTH IT?

We think the answer is a resounding YES. People are making housing decisions based on school scores that aren’t measuring what they think is being measured. School quality has very little to do with those ratings because straight unadjusted test scores account for roughly a third of the score and an equity score that dings schools for having diversity accounts for about 20% of the score. 

In the end, the algorithm for school ratings that are displayed on all the real estate search portals is broken and discriminatory. According to Chalkbeat, this might be exacerbating segregation in our nation’s schools.

Perpetuating Rapid Gentrification

But this isn’t the worst part of it. The worst part is what happens to urban schools in the absence of substantive school ratings. Urban schools are dinged heavily, so in Boston for example, there are very few public neighborhood schools with scores of 7 or better. The scenario that unfolds has happened in cities all over the country. A few affluent families band together and decide to send their kids to kindergarten at their neighborhood’s low scoring school. Word gets around. Other affluent families start moving to the neighborhood for the “hidden gem” school. Over time, the school gets overrun and the school’s culture and that of the neighborhood is lost.

But what if the veil were lifted? Our algorithm uncovers dozens of schools in Boston that are highly rated, and if these high ratings were well known, then parents would have several great options to choose from, instead of focusing on one or two schools which leads to rapid gentrification. While not a perfect solution, the gentrification could get spread out, and schools and neighborhoods could stand a chance of stabilizing demographics instead of experiencing the negative effects of rapid, focused gentrification.

The biased data that is being reported on all the real estate search engines may be perpetuating rapid gentrification, displacing low income families and resulting in schools and neighborhoods losing their vibrant culture. 

BUT THERE IS GOOD NEWS

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BROOKLYN’S TOP 26 OUT-PERFORMING ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS

Why 26 schools? It is important to us that the approach to selecting schools is objective and methodical. We selected these 26 schools by sorting the schools according to the greatest difference between the GreatSchools score and the score in our algorithm. The greatest difference was 6 points (we gave the school a 10, GreatSchools assigned a 4). Had we stopped at a difference of 4, there would have been only 18 schools. Finally we decided the cutoff would be schools with a difference of 3 and at least an A- grade on SchoolSparrow. That yielded 26 schools. In our next post, we plan to reveal the remaining 30-ish schools that are Out-Performers in Brooklyn.

So, without further ado, we are proud to present Brooklyn’s Top 26 Out-Performing Neighborhood Elementary Schools. Please note that the scores we are reporting are the % of non LEP/CWD students who are deemed proficient on the Reading/Language Arts section of the standardized test at each school. 

1. PS 516 Sunset Park Avenues Elementary School, 4222 4th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11232

Photo Courtesy of Google Maps

The injustice being perpetuated against this awesome school is mind boggling. Not only does Sunset Park Avenues have a fair amount of diversity scoring 15/40 on our diversity rating, but also their dual language program (English/Spanish and English/Chinese) attracts English Language Learners. After adjusting for the higher than average LEP/CWD students, PS 516’s test scores move from 32% to 84.5%….a 260% increase.

Now, we have to be clear that this is a small school, so our LEP/CWD adjustments and the underlying assumptions could be overestimating performance. But even if we adjust our rating for this school with a reasonable assumption that 40% of the LEP students are also classified as CWD students, the test scores are near 70%…still very high and worthy of our highest score.

Sunset Park Avenues Elementary School earns an A+ (10/10) while all the real estate search portals assign a 4/10. Schools that have similar income profiles score 47.4% proficient on average, so Sunset Parks 84.5% is nearly 80% above expectations.

Parents, don’t be fooled by the unfair ratings, this is a high quality school where your child will have the opportunity to learn a different language in a supportive, inclusive environment that is doing an incredible job of educating kids. We recognize the students, parents, administrators and faculty at this awesome school. Kudos to you all.

The average home value in zip code 11232 is $548,092. We found this 2BD condo currently listed for $509,000 in the attendance boundaries, but it’s been on the market for over 2 months, so it’s likely overpriced. Or if you’d rather rent, this 2BD rental is currently listed at $1,800/mo.

Link to school website: https://www.sunsetparkavenues.org

2. PS 110 The Monitor, 124 Monitor St. Brooklyn, NY 11222

The Greenpoint Monitor Museum - P.S. 110 - THE MONITOR SCHOOL - CLASS ONE
Image courtesy of the Greenpoint Monitor Museum

The Monitor is a Brooklyn school that should not go overlooked. Greatschools ranks The Monitor at a 4/10, while they sit at a high of 9/10 through our algorithm. How is this possible? Let’s have a deeper look. 

When normalized for parent income, New York area schools with similar income profiles average 68% proficient on the Reading/Language Arts section of the test. On the surface, The Monitor displays near average results with an overall score of 67% proficient. However, this is before factoring in the 16 LEP (limited English proficiency) and 25 CWD (child with disability) test takers. Once this is calculated into the mix, The Monitor’s score is adjusted to 78.3% proficiency.

PS 110 is an out-performing elementary school in Brooklyn, and we like to congratulate this school’s community on making a difference for Brooklyn area kids.

Another highlight from this school is that they place at a 20 out of 40 on the diversity scale. Demonstrated on their Social Justice and Equity page, the intent of the curriculum at each grade level is to, “create civic literacy, foster civility, promote understanding and application of democratic institutions and processes and enhance a sense of political efficiency.”

The average home value in the Greenpoint neighborhood of New York is $1,058,000, and the least expensive home in the attendance boundaries is a 2BD currently on the market for $1,369,000. Not exactly affordable, but we found this 2BD apartment for rent located a short walk from the school, and currently listed at $1,799/mo.

Link to school website:https://www.ps110k.org 

3. PS 290 Juan Morel Campos, 135 Schenck Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11207

Photo courtesy of Evens

SchoolSparrow’s algorithm assigns Juan Morel Campos an A- (9/10). Congratulations to the students, parents and especially the strong and dedicated educators at Juan Morel Campos who are making a difference. This school is exemplary. All the real estate search engines report a 4/10 for this amazing school. Unbelievable.

Juan Morel Campos scores a strong 20 out of 40 on our diversity scale, so parents can rest assured their child will be part of a vibrant diverse community at this awesome school. Juan Morel Campos describes themselves as a safe and diverse community surrounded by inclusive and creative resources.

This school excelled in their standardized testing, earning 62.6 points, compared to other schools with similar income profiles that average 45.8% proficient. They scored 37% above average!

PS 290 focuses on equity, as evidenced by their Equity Statement that focuses on celebrating their diversity, respecting differences, and providing equitable support so that all students can achieve academic success.

Interested in moving here? The median home price in zip code 11207 is $513,093. We found this affordable 3BD condo currently listed at only $299,000 in the attendance boundaries.

Website: https://www.juanmorelcampos.com/

4. PS 503 School of Discovery and Exploration, 330 59TH ST BROOKLYN, NY 11220

Photo Courtesy of ps503online.org

Despite the (4/10) given by Greatschools, SchoolSparrow’s algorithm ranks The School of Discovery an A- (9/10). Our algorithm normalizes for parent income, and makes adjustments for LEP/CWD test takers in order to deliver a more fair and equitable comparison between schools.

The School of Discovery has a diversity score of 15 out of 40, meaning children here enjoy the benefits of learning with students with different perspectives and backgrounds. 

When adjusting for children with disabilities and limited English proficiency, students at The School of Discovery performed much better than expected, scoring an overall adjusted average of 62.2%, almost 52% greater than the expected test score for school’s with similar economic profiles (40.4%). 

The School of Discovery will provide a world class education for students of all backgrounds and abilities. Your child will get a great education in a focused environment at this incredible school. 

Parents, please don’t let the (4/10) you see on all the real estate search portals deter you from exploring this school. This is a high quality institution that deserves a closer look. We recognize the hard work and dedication put forward by the students, parents, administrators, and especially the excellent educators at this exemplary school.

Are you interested in sending your children to this school? Zillow reports average home values at $531,191 in zip code 11220. We found this finding a 3 Bedroom, 2 Bathroom house for $550,000.

School website: https://ps503online.org/

5. PS 153 The Homecrest School, 1970 Homecrest Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11229

The Homecrest School is an Out-Performer in Brooklyn; this school has an A- SchoolSparrow rating based on our algorithm that takes into account the socio-economic profile of the school, and adjusts for LEP/CWD test takers. This school is a high quality institution with dedicated educators that are making a difference.

It’s a shame that all the real estate search engines display a 4/10 rating for this school. How many families have overlooked this school simply because of this unfair biased rating?

In terms of diversity, The Homecrest School earns our highest score of 40/40! No doubt any child that is lucky enough to attend Homecrest will benefit from all the cognitive and emotional benefits that come with being in a diverse environment. Research has shown that a diverse environment creates better teamwork and problem solving skills, and of course higher empathy and acceptance of others. These are the kids that we want leading the next generation.

The expected or average score for schools with similar economic profiles, when adjusted for LEP/CWD students, is 51% proficient. Homecrest’s actual adjusted score is 66%, approximately 30% higher than expected!

Homecrest does not simply teach on the test, this school has a specific focus on a safe community, the arts, and extracurricular activities.

We really like what Principal Santa Maria had to say:

“Our overall commitment is to focus on education in conjunction with social emotional learning, which proves that we will continue to strive toward excellence.”

The average home value in zip code 11229 is $564,059. The least expensive 2BD home is listed for $319,000 in the attendance boundaries of PS153. Prices jump to over $600K for 3BD listings in the attendance boundaries.

Link to school website: https://ps153.echalksites.com/

6. Cypress Hills Community School PS 89, 265 Warwick St, Brooklyn NY 11207

Image courtesy of google maps

Cypress Hills is another Out-Performing school in Brooklyn that has unfairly been given a 4/10 rating. But our analysis of this awesome school reveals the truth, Cypress Hills is one of the best elementary schools in the entire New York region. We’ve assigned a B+ rating (9/10) due to the exemplary performance of Cypress Hills students on the Reading/Language Arts portion of the standardized test.

Schools with similar income profiles score 45.5% proficient, but Cypress Hills students exceed this expectation by 28% with 58.3% proficiency when adjusted for LEP/CWD students. 

Cypress Hills has a dual language curriculum Spanish/English which guarantees fluency in both languages and an appreciation for and respect for cultural diversity.

The average home value is $513,903 in 11207. We found this 3BD/2BA home located a short walk from the school listed at $449,000.

School website: http://chcs89.org/

7. PS 238 Anne Sullivan, 1633 E 8th St, Brooklyn, NY 11223

Image courtesy of google maps

Anne Sullivan earns a B rating when analyzed by our algorithm, which is equivalent to an 8/10. All the real estate search portals miss the mark with an unfair 3/10 rating.

Schools with similar income profiles on average score 48.3% proficient on the Reading/Language Arts section of the standardized test.  Anne Sullivan students score 58.3% proficient when adjusted for LEP/CWD students which is roughly 20% higher than expected.

In addition to its incredible test scores, Anne Sullian has a diversity rating of 40/40 which guarantees that students at this awesome school will enjoy all the cognitive and emotional benefits that come with an incredibly diverse environment. Research has proven that kids in diverse environments develop better teamwork and problem solving skills, and greater empathy and acceptance of others.

Named for Helen Keller’s teacher. Anne Sullivan’s mission statement is on point. As revealed in our report on Chicago out-performing schools, based on interviews with 13 principals, we learned about the importance of community partnerships as part of the narrative of student success. The first line in Anne Sullivan’s mission statement drives home their understanding of the importance of all stakeholders collaborating in their school community. They touch on critical thinking, emotional intelligence, diversity, and end with their desire to develop strong upstanding future leaders who are socially responsible. These are the kids we want leading the next generation.

The average home value in zip code 11223 is $808,355. But we found this 3BD home currently listing for $499K in the attendance boundaries.

Link to school website: https://sites.google.com/view/ps238k

8. PS 1 The Bergen, 304 47th St, Brooklyn, NY 11220

Photo courtesy of PS1 facebook

All the real estate search engines display a biased rating of 3/10 for this incredible elementary school. Our algorithm assigns a B (8/10) rating due to exemplary performance on the standardized test when normalized for parent income and adjusted for LEP/CWD students.

The expected adjusted score for schools with similar economic profiles is 49.4% proficient. Anne Sullivan students score 59.4% proficient, a full 20% above expectations.

We discovered in this report that community partnerships are a key indicator in out-performing schools. The Bergen has partnerships with The Brooklyn Museum of Art, Youth Chorus, Ballet Tech, Dramatists Guild Foundation, Community World Project (focused on arts-in-education, and the list goes on. No doubt kids from any economic background will get a world class education at PS1 The Bergen.

Our hats are off to all the dedicated educators at this out-performing elementary school in Brooklyn.

The average home value is $531,191 in zip code 11220. The Bergen is located in a very expensive neighborhood near the Bay Ridge Channel and Bush Terminal Piers Park. The least expensive home on the market right now is this 3BD condo currently listed for $799,000 in the attendance boundaries of PS1. Interestingly, the remaining properties on the market within the attendance boundaries are all 2-4 unit multifamily apartment buildings.

Link to school website: https://www.ps1k.org/

9. PS 206 Joseph F Lamb School, 2200 GRAVESEND NECK RD BROOKLYN, NY 11229

Image Courtesy of NYC Mentors

For starters, Joseph F Lamb School ranks relatively high in diversity, scoring 20 out of 40, making this school a good place for your child to learn and adapt his/her skills in a diverse environment. As Joseph F Lamb School has a higher than average population of kids with disabilities, your child will certainly learn a thing or two about empathy as well. 

When analyzing this school’s scores using our algorithm, which normalizes for parent income and accounts for children with disabilities and limited english proficiency, Joseph F Lamb’s score increases from a 59.0% to a 76.1%, making Joseph Lamb an outlier when it comes to test scores! Joseph F Lamb School scores 45% above average!

Parents, at PS 206 The Joseph F Lamb School, your child can be involved in some outstanding enrichment programs. PS 206 offers the following enrichment programs: Balanced Literacy, Intensive Test-Taking, the Wilson Reading Program, Music, and the Character Education Program, to name a few. Also, they offer extracurricular activities that help students gain skills and express their interests. The extracurricular activities they offer include the following: theater, basketball, cooking, technology, etc. For more information, visit their school website.

Consider this quote from Joseph F Lamb’s Principal:

“Our mission at PS 206, a school of diverse ethnic populations, is to provide the best education for every student in a stimulating, challenging, safe environment with high performance standards and current technology. We are committed to helping children become creative thinkers, lifelong achievers, and well-rounded citizens. PS 206 endorses and nourishes a collaborative approach where students, teachers, staff, parents, administrators, and community leaders are dedicated to academic excellence, mutual respect, and equality for all.” 

Greatschools ranked this school a (6/10) with their biased ranking algorithms, however, SchoolSparrow has awarded the school an A (10/10) for their exemplary performance. Parents, don’t overlook this incredible public school, it might be the perfect fit for your child and it deserves to be on your short list of schools to tour.

Interested in sending your kids here? The median home price in the Joseph F Lamb neighborhood is $564,059. Check out this 2BD condo currently listed for $280,000 in the attendance boundaries of Joseph F Lamb School.

Link to school website: https://sites.google.com/psis206k.com/school/psis-206

10. PS 94 The Henry Longfellow School, 5010 6TH AVE BROOKLYN, NY 11220

Image courtesy of NYC Mentors

The Henry Longfellow School ranks fairly well amongst others in terms of diversity, scoring a 20 out of 40, making this school a solid place for your child to learn in a diverse environment that instills lifelong lessons about respecting other cultures. In addition to their above average diversity score, The Henry Longfellow School will also teach your child to accept perspectives and ideas from a range of audiences, as 35% of the Longfellow’s students are English Language Learners, and 10% are children with disabilities.

When adjusting for children with disabilities and limited English proficiency, students at The Henry Longfellow School performed much better than expected, scoring an overall adjusted average of 74.6%, almost 67% greater than the expected test score for school’s with similar economic profiles (44.7%). 

With a great student to teacher ratio of 14:1, The Henry Longfellow School is certainly one to keep in mind while looking at schools in the Brooklyn Area. With their showing of continual improvement in overall and adjusted overall test scores, this school should absolutely be on the shortlist of schools to tour. Additionally, the school offers a plethora of 10+ languages, ranging anywhere from Russian to Haitian Creole to ensure the best education for your child. 

Despite Henry Longfellow School’s average score of 6/10 on the GreatSchools ranking, SchoolSparrow’s ranking gives the school an A (10/10), as their excellence in diversity, scholastic improvement, and general school environment push them to the top of the pack. 

Interested in sending your little one here? Zillow has the median listed housing price at $531,191. SchoolSparrow found a great 3BD/2BA house in this neighborhood for $639,000!

Link to school website: https://www.schools.nyc.gov/schools/K094

11. PS 197 The Kings Highway Academy, 1599 E 22ND ST BROOKLYN, NY 11210

The Kings Highway Academy ranks relatively high in diversity, scoring a fair 20 out of 40, illustrating how this school could be a great place for your kid to adapt and learn about inclusivity and diversity. 

Using the SchoolSparrow algorithm, which normalizes for parent income and  accounts for children with disabilities and limited English proficiency, The Kings Highway Academy students scored a whopping 83% proficient when adjusted for LEP/CWD students compared to the 55% reported by the Dept of Education.

The Kings Highway Academy exceeds expectations by over 65%, Scoring an 83% when it’s peers average 50.4% proficient, our algorithms prove that this school is unfairly rated. We are here to set the record straight: The Kings Highway Academy is one of the best public elementary schools in Brooklyn, and no doubt students from all walks of life will get an incredible education at this awesome school.

An interesting fact about The Kings Highway Academy is Bernie Sanders is a not so recent graduate of this fine school!

While Greatschools graded The Kings Highway Academy a (6/10) with their biased ratings, SchoolSparrow awarded the school with an A (10/10). 

Interested in sending your child here? Median house prices in this region are around $715,141, and we found this 3BD/2BA house listing for $579,000.

Link to school website: https://ps-197.echalksites.com

12. PS 128 Bensonhurst, 2075 84TH ST BROOKLYN, NY 11214

Despite Greatschools not seeing the quality in this school giving them a ranking of (6/10), SchoolSparrow awards The Bensonhurst School an A+, a perfect (10/10) for their amazing achievements in diversity and education. 

To start the SchoolSparrow analysis, The Bensonhurst School ranks extremely well in diversity, scoring a tremendous 40 out of 40 on the diversity scale, guaranteeing your child will benefit from all the socio-emotional advantages that come with diversity.. In addition to their superb diversity, The Bensonhurst School will also teach your child valuable life-long lessons about empathy and inclusivity due to their higher than average population of children with disabilities. 

When using the SchoolSparrow algorithm, normalizing for parent income and adjusting for children with disabilities and limited english proficiency, 70% of students at Bensonhurst are proficient on the Reading Language Arts section of the standardized test. Compared to the surrounding area of students who belong to the same income range, students at Bensonhurst score 31% above average!

Interested in sending your child/student to Bensonhurst? The median price for a home here in this neighborhood is $745,462, but here is a 3BD/2BA home we found for $709,800!

Link to school website: https://www.ps128bk.org/home_pag

13. MS 577 Conselyea Preparatory School, 208 N 5TH ST BROOKLYN, NY 11211

Image courtesy of Greenpoint Post

Conselyea Preparatory School has a diversity score of 20 of 40 which really adds to the multicultural experience for students at this underrated school.

And the students knock it out of the park with standardized testing. Students at schools with similar economic profiles average 61% proficient on the Reading/Language Arts section of the standardized test, but at Conselyea Preparatory School they score 72% proficient, almost 20% higher than expectations.

That’s why Conselyea Preparatory School scores a B+ (9/10) according to our algorithm, while you’ll find only a 5/10 rating on all the real estate search portals. Conselyea deserves a harder look, and should be considered a contender to explore further by visiting the school. It might be the perfect fit for your child.

Consider their Mission Statement which seems on point:

“M.S. 577 is devoted to the total development (educational, emotional, social and physical) of the adolescent child. Our students excel in all academic areas, with an extension to higher level educational credits in Mathematics, Science and Foreign Language. We encourage and build multicultural awareness and sensitivity in all children and adults, as well as a fundamental respect for self, others and the community. Our goal is to make the “school” experience the cornerstone of a student’s “lifelong” learning experience, which ensures a solid pathway to college.”

The median house price in this area is $994,991. We found this 2BD apartment currently listed for $1,900/mo near the school.

website: https://www.schools.nyc.gov/schools/K577

14. PS 159 The Isaac Pitkin School, 2781 Pitkin Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11208

The Isaac Pitkin School is another Brooklyn Public Elementary School that deserves recognition for their well organized focus on developing the whole child. While greatschools severely underrates this school with a 5/10 rating, our algorithm assigns a 9/10 for their academic achievements.

The average score for schools with similar socio-economic profiles, after adjustments for CWD/LEP populations, is roughly 49% proficient on the Reading/Language Arts section of the standardized test. Students at the Isaac Pitkin School score approximately 62% proficient, exceeding expectations by 26%! The Isaac Pitkin School is one of the best elementary schools in Brooklyn.

But the accolades don’t stop with academics. The Issac Pitkin School has one of the most diverse student bodies in all of Brooklyn, scoring 40/40 on our diversity scale. This guarantees that your child will receive all the benefits of operating in a diverse environment. Research has shown that children develop better teamwork and problem solving skills, more empathy and acceptance of others, even suggesting higher IQ’s when attending a school with a high level of diversity.

The Isaac Pitkin School focuses on equity, rigor and social emotional engagement, setting the stage for the development of the whole child. They go beyond just academics with robust music and art programs available to students, not to mention social emotional resources such as videos titled “Self-Esteem: How to feel awesome about being you”, and “The Mindset of a Champion”. No doubt children in this awesome school are fully supported and are on the path to being tomorrow’s leaders.

These are the kids that we want to see leading the next generation. Our hats are off to the students, parents, administrators and especially the dedicated educators that are making a difference at The Isaac Pitkin School.

Website: https://www.ps159.org/

15. PS 236 Mill Basin, 6302 AVE U BROOKLYN, NY 11234

Photo courtesy of Pinterest

Mill Basin is extremely underrated and our team at SchoolSparrow thinks that it is something special. The SchoolSparrow ranking of Mill Basin is a B+ or 9/10. Greatschools has missed many key factors about Mill Basin and ranked them as a 5 out of 10.

This school is also very diverse. They hold a score of 30/40. This score means that the student body is composed of at least 3 different cultural groups, each prominently represented (15% of students or more) at the school. This diversity is a game changer when it comes to education. Research has shown that kids in diverse schools are shown to have better teamwork and problem solving skills, and of course greater empathy for and acceptance of people from different backgrounds. These are the kids that we want leading the next generation.

Standardized test scores are also fantastic The school on average gets a score of 78.6 points. Children that come from similar economic backgrounds on average get 65.3 points. This is a huge deviation of 13.3%. 

This school is awesome but the real estate nearby is just as amazing. The median house price in this area is $646,558. Here is a great 3 bedroom two bathroom home for $550,000. 

School: https://www.schools.nyc.gov/schools/K236

16. PS 191 Paul Robeson, 1600 Park Pl, Brooklyn NY 11233

Paul Robeson earns a B rating from SchoolSparrow (8/10) while all the real estate search engines sell this out-performing school short with a low 4/10 rating.

When adjusted for CWD/LEP test takers, PS 191 scores 55.4% proficient on the Reading/Language Arts section of the test. On average, schools in the New York metro area with similar economic profiles score 46.6% proficient. Paul Robeson exceeds this expected score by roughly 19%.

Paul Robeson has some diversity, scoring 15/40 points on our diversity scale. Kids at Robeson will benefit from the positive effects of having exposure to other kids from different backgrounds.

But what is it really like at The Paul Robeson School? Their website shows a glimpse inside where it becomes very clear that this school does not simply “teach the test”. With a community garden, two dance studios, a state of the art computer lab, a cookshop classroom, a multisensory engagement center, and Fun Fridays, there is little doubt that The Paul Robeson School provides a well rounded education for its students.

Their mission statement shows that this school focuses intently on creating an inclusive environment where students from all backgrounds and abilities can feel respected and valued. Parents, don’t believe the 4/10 rating…this school will provide a world class education that produces responsible citizens of the 21st Century.

The average home value in the Crown Heights neighborhood is $849,815. We found this 2BD/2BA condo currently listed for $599,000 in the attendance boundaries.

Website: https://sites.google.com/view/ps191paulrobesonschool

17. PS 262 El Hajj Malik El Shabbazz Elementary School, 500 Macon St, Brooklyn, NY 11233

Photo Courtesy of DNAinfo

Greatschools gave El Hajj Malik El Shabbazz Elementary School a 3 out of 10, but in reality this school scores a B- (7/10) when evaluated using SchoolSparrow’s more equitable algorithm.

El Hajj Malik’s diversity gets them a solid 15 out of 40 on our diversity scale. This school celebrates diversity and inclusion, and it’s only fitting that it is named after Malcolm X. Just inside the main entrance is a mural of the prominent leader.

This school not only tests well, but they beat the average by at least 14%. These students scored 52.4% proficient on the Reading/Language Arts section of the standardized test, compared to the average or expected score of 45.9% for schools with similar economic profiles. 

But their score is likely better than we are reporting because the raw data reports the CWD score as LT50. Looking at the raw data, we see there were 14 students out of 83 total test takers who are categorized as CWD. The scores reported for these 14 students is LT50, which means less than 50%. In this case, our algorithm assumes these students scored 50% proficient. But if the actual proficiency score is more like 20% for CWD students, the score for PS 262 jumps to nearly 60% proficient, which would push PS 262 to a B (8/10) or even a B+ (9/10). 

Regardless, PS 262 is a shining star in Brooklyn. Parents, don’t overlook this school because of an unfair 3/10 assigned by a biased rating system.

Want to send your child here? The median home price in zip code 11233 is $859,680. This is the least expensive 2BD condo currently listed at $765,000 in the attendance boundaries.. Not exactly affordable. But here is a 3BD rental located in the attendance boundaries listed at $1,850/mo.

Website: https://www.schools.nyc.gov/schools/K262

18. PS 11 Purvis J Behan, 419 Waverly Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11238

Photo courtesy of: Janet Upadhye

PS 11 Purvis J Behan is another Out-Performer that was underrated. GreatSchools gave this school a score of 6/10, while we at SchoolSparrow gave this exceptional school a score of 9/10. 

Other than earning a well-deserved overall score, PS 11 has gone above and beyond when it comes to standardized testing. Their expected score was 63.7 points, while their actual score was 80.3 points. The actual score includes CWD and LEP test-takers. Overall, the students of PS 11 had performed 26% better than schools with students who have similar parent income.

At PS 11, academics and the arts are held at a higher standard. Their esteemed art curriculum is meant to provide students with skills to improve their problem-solving/ critical thinking, developing creativity, and heightening their confidence through experiential learning. Art at PS11 is incorporated through classes like dance, drama, visual arts, and instrumental music.  

Check out this quote from their mission statement:

We cultivate Creativity, Community, Equity, and Excellence for all of our students.

We encourage personal exploration and critical thinking in addition to academic excellence, thus ensuring our students are knowledgeable, well-rounded, and equipped with interpersonal and problem-solving skills to overcome challenges and adversity.

And we develop life-long learners by integrating science, technology, engineering, arts, and sports residencies into our standards-based curriculum, positioning our students for success that honors their own uniqueness and the individuality of others.

Thinking about homes within the area? The median home price for this area is $789,728. We’ve found a listing for a comfortable two bedroom one bathroom condo for $760,000. Also, the residence is an eight-minute drive from the school.

Website: https://ps11brooklyn.org/

19. PS 26 Jesse Owens, 1014 Lafayette Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11221

Photo Courtesy: Ken Excellence

Moving down our list of Brooklyn Out-Performers is PS 26 Jesse Owens. GreatSchools gave this public school a score of 6/10, while SchoolSparrow’s algorithm assigns this out-performing school a score of 9/10.

PS 26 has a diversity score of 20/40, which is impressive. This score means that students will be in an environment that is inclusive to every cultural background. 

Other than diversity, standardized testing at PS 26 is also impressive.  Students were expected to earn 52.6 points but, they actually earned a score of 69.8 points. This score accounts for LEP and CWD test-takers. Also, students of PS 26 scored 33% better than other schools with similar income profiles.

PS 26, students have opportunities to join their various esteemed programs. A program they offer, Gifted & Talented, is meant to empower students and help them realize their talents within the classroom. Some other programs include Urban Voices (Chorus), the ASD Nest Program (Autism Spectrum Disorder Program), and the Afro Latin Jazz Alliance (ALJA), to name a few. For more information, visit their website. But we are here to let you know that Jesse Owens is one of the best elementary schools in Brooklyn. Parents, don’t let their 6/10 discourage you from visiting the school.

Here’s a quote from their vision statement: 

“The Jesse Owens School ~ P.S. 26 is committed to creating a professional learning community where all students are expected to demonstrate mastery of all content areas. Our staff maintains high expectations for success and work collaboratively to ensure that all students learn. Student performance continues to be the barometer upon which we measure the effectiveness of our teaching. Instructional Leadership maximizes the skills and knowledge of the entire learning community which includes staff, parents, students, and educational partners.”

The median home price within this area is $1,062,568. We’ve found a listing for a freshly renovated two bedroom one bathroom condo for $565,000. Also, the residence is a seven-minute drive from the school.

Website: https://ps026k.echalksites.com/ 

20. PS 376 Felisa Rincon de Gautier, 194 Harman St Brooklyn, NY 11237

Felisa Rincon de Gautier is another underrated school in Brooklyn that doesn’t deserve the 6 out of 10 rating that is displayed on all the real estate search portals. 

Felisa Rincon de Gautier is a great school for your child to get personalized and dedicated instruction with a student to teacher ratio of 15.3 students per teacher. In addition, this school has impressive student performance when their test scores are appropriately measured in the context of the socio-economic profile of the school, and accounting for LEP/CWD test takers.

These students score 66.2% proficient overall, but there is a wide range of scores by grade, with the straight unadjusted scores for 3rd grade at an incredible 87%, while the 5th grade scored 37%. Sometimes this simply means the demographics of the school is changing, with students from higher income families having higher concentrations in the lower grades.  It could also mean that the higher grades have a higher concentration of LEP/CWD children. Overall, the school scores 30% higher than the average score for schools with similar income profiles, which makes this school an outlier and out-performer.

PS 376 considers themselves a Community of Growth, providing unparalleled dedication and commitment to students and their variety of needs, passions and dreams. This school practices Project Based Learning, where students learn the curriculum as they work together to solve real world problems. Central to the premise of this system, is the student-influenced inquiry process that teaches students to think critically and find the right questions to focus on in solving challenges.

The Felisa Rincon De Gautier School is an exemplary institution that will provide a quality education for families from all walks of life and abilities. Parents, don’t let the 6/10 dissuade you from exploring this school; it could be the perfect fit for your child.

The average home value in zip code 11237 is $845,191. Within the attendance boundaries, there is literally one property on the market right now priced at over $1 million. But we found this 3BD rental currently listed for $1,800/mo.

Website: https://www.ps376.org/?lang=es

21. PS 971, School of Math Science and Healthy Living, 6214 4th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11220

Photo courtesy: Winnie

PS 971 School of Math Science and Healthy Living is an incredible school that deserves more recognition. GreatSchools gave this school a score of 6/10 but, we at SchoolSparrow gave this school a score of 9/10.   

PS 971 has an impressive diversity score of 20/40. Parents, this score demonstrates that your child will be in an inclusive and diverse environment that embraces their differences.

While their diversity score is remarkable, standardized testing at PS 971 has been amazing as well. Their expected score was 48.1 points but, their actual score is 63.6% proficient points instead, 32% better than schools with similar income profiles.

At PS 971, they take the health of their students very seriously. The incorporation of health within the school goes as far as having nutrition education discussed frequently among faculty with students. Also, they have set a no junk food policy. To add on, to promote nutrition education, PS 971 offers cooking and gardening programs. Lastly, to demonstrate how health-conscious they are, they partnered up with Coalition for Healthy School Food. They are a nonprofit organization that presents plant-based foods and nutrition education to schools and the community. For more information, please visit their school website.

Interested in buying a home near the school? The median home price within this area is $531,191. We’ve found a listing for this two bedroom one bathroom condo for $479,000. This home is only a four-minute drive from the school.  

Website: https://www.ps971.com/

22. PS 200 The Benson School, 1940 Benson Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11214

Photo courtesy: Picasa

PS 200 The Benson School is another Brooklyn Out-Performer on our list. GreatSchools has given this school an undeserving score of 6/10, while we at SchoolSparrow gave this school a score of 9/10.

PS 200 has a diversity score of 30/40, which is astonishing. This score tells us that students of PS 200 are in a very diverse and inclusive school environment. Students are The Benson School will receive all the cognitive benefits that come with a safe environment full of kids from all walks of life an ethnicities. Including better teamwork and problem solving skills, acceptance of and empathy for people from different cultures, and some studies even suggest higher IQ’s!

At PS 200, they do not disappoint when it comes to standardized testing. Their expected testing score was 50.8 points but, they earned high marks with 66.4 points. This score includes LEP and CWD test-takers. Overall, students of PS 200 scored 32% better than schools with similar income profiles.

Students at PS 200 get the most out of their school experience due in part to their community partnerships with The YMCA (after school program) and Puppetry in Practice (enrichment activities). Parents, these partnerships encourage creativity, imagination, and growth through academic and recreational activities. For more information, visit their school website.

Here’s a quote from their mission statement:

“The Mission of PS 200 is to provide every child with an education which will enable him to reach his fullest potential and thus become a productive member of the global community. Recognizing the fact that children have individual learning styles, we will become leaders in developing strong academic programs with innovative approaches. Together with effective leadership, a dedicated teaching staff, and a supportive parent community, we will prepare our children to live and succeed in a technologically advanced society.”

The Benson School is one of the best elementary schools in Brooklyn, and they deserve a hard look from parents who want a world class education for their kids.

The median home price within this area is $490,420. We’ve found a newly renovated two bedroom one bathroom condo for $359,000. Also, the residence is only a three-minute drive from the school.

Website: https://www.ps200.com/

23. PS 506 School of Journalism and Technology, 330 59th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11220

Photo courtesy: NYC Mentors

PS 506 School of Journalism and Technology is another school deserving of a higher rating. GreatSchools gave this school an unfit score of 6/10, while we at SchoolSparrow gave this school a score of 9/10.

When it comes to diversity, PS 506 earned a diversity score of 20/40. This score lets us know that PS 506 provides an environment that embraces values of individuality, inclusion, and respect.

Besides diversity, students of PS 506 have done amazing on their standardized testing. Their expected score was 46.1 points but, they went on to earn an actual score of 62.4 points. This score accounts LEP and CWD test-takers. Students of PS 506 scored 35% better than other students with similar parent income.

Parents, PS 506 School of Journalism and Technology provides numerous enrichment programs to inspire your child. Some programs include the following: Violin Program, Chorus, Brooklyn Connections, and Stem Robotics, to name a few. For more information, visit their school website.

Here’s a quote from their Core Beliefs: 

“At P.S. 506, we strongly believe that students learn best when educators create a safe, risk-free academic environment where students can engage in productive struggle. Teachers provide meaningful, relevant, and challenging instruction by offering differentiated entry points, modeling expected outcomes, and providing clear and specific next steps.”

The median home price within this area is $531,191. We’ve found a listing for a cozy two bedroom one bathroom condo for $495,000. Also, the residence is a seven-minute drive from the school.

Website: http://ps506k.weebly.com/

24. PS 179 Kensington, 202 Ave C Brooklyn, NY 11218

Photo Courtesy: Kevin Walsh via https://forgotten-ny.com/

Kensington Elementary is a public school in the Brooklyn area that should not go overlooked. 

This out-performer earns a 6/10 on Greatschools, but a 9/10 through our algorithm. How? Let’s look at the facts. 

This school’s raw test scores report an average of 48.7% proficient, but once put through our system, the overall score is adjusted to 64.9% proficient. That is a large difference of 33.3% when not including all factors. Another area that Kensington stands out is in its diversity. On a scale of 40, they place at a high of 30. This is represented by a population of: Asian: 55%, Black: 4%, Hispanic or Latinx: 24%, Native American: 1%, and White: 15%. With this diverse student body, your student is bound to work in a very inclusive environment, generating an enriched educational experience. 

Kensington offers a rich curriculum for students. They even incorporate hour of code where they offer children the opportunity to begin learning code at a very young age, which is critical in this digital world. 

Along with our algorithm presenting Kensington as a high quality school, Mimi O’Conner seems to think that this is not just a great school, but also a prime location. “It’s hard to say exactly which factor had a greater impact on our decision—schools or budget—but the fact is that we were never going to buy in an area where we couldn’t send our child, who was four years old at the time, to public school.” She shares on her blog Brick Underground

To discover 4 more reasons why O’conner believes this is the optimal place to live and give your kids an education, click this link. 

Link to school website: http://www.ps179kensington.org 

25. PS 169 Sunset Park, 4305 7th Ave Brooklyn, NY 11232


Photo Courtesy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CplpbhLT7hs 

Nearing the end of our list, Sunset Park School is yet another school that is underappreciated. 

This school earns a 6/10 on Greatschools, however, a 9/10 once filtered through our ranking system.

Sunset Park is determined to deliver a diverse educational environment by offering Dual Language classes in Chinese, Mandarin as well as Spanish in Kindergarten through 4th grade. This is represented in our statistics of achieving a 20 out of 40 on our scale. With a narrow student-to-teacher ratio of 13.0, students are capable of having a very hands-on education, with one on one guidance. 

As for Sunset Park’s test scores, the difference between the calculated scores and the scores in our system is 34.2%. This school achieves an average of 62.0 after our adjustment, after factoring in 222 Limited English Proficiency (LEP) students, and 89 Children With Disabilities (CWD). 

This area of Brooklyn is affordable. This 3 bed 2 bath stands out at only $399,000 and an 18-minute commute from Sunset Park School. Sunset Park is also conveniently located along the way to downtown Brooklyn. If seeking job employment in the area, Sunset Park also offers assistance to adults from their Center of Family Life (CFL) resource center. 

This center offers many other resources such as family counseling, food pantry, legal assistance, and help applying for benefits, for any family living in the Sunset Parks area, and who have children attending a Sunset Park School. Sunset Park proves itself to be a lovely, helpful community. 

Link to school website: https://www.sunsetparkschool.org 

26. PS 154 Windsor Terrace School, 1625 11th Ave Brooklyn, NY 11215

Phyllis A. Sears on Businessyab.com 

Windsor Terrace Elementary School is among one of the many overlooked public schools in the Brooklyn area. This is shown by the low rating of 6/10 on Greatschools, where SchoolSparrow’s algorithm rates them at a 9/10. 

Diving deeper into the data, what really stands out with Windsor Terrace Elementary is the incredibly high test scores. Where the expected test score at this school stands at 73.7, calculating in 45 CWD (child with disabilities) and 9 LEP (limited English proficiency) into the mix of their 233 student body who took the test, The Windsor Terrace School’s overall test score is an incredible 90.5% proficient! 

When it comes to diversity, Windsor Terrace earns a strong 20 out of 40 on the chart. This is reflected in their mission statement as they strive to develop a “curriculum that is responsive to the emotional needs, cultural backgrounds, and great intellectual potential of our students.”

Another highlight of this school is their short distance from the heart of Brooklyn with a quick 11-minute driving commute. This short distance is desired by many who seek to work in downtown Brooklyn. 

Along with the ideal distance between Windsor Terrace Elementary to downtown Brooklyn, there are many housing options varying between $500-$700K. This particular house is a 3 bed, 2.5 bath listed at $669,999 with a fully renovated interior, including a jacuzzi-jetted bath and a distance of 15 minutes from Windsor Terrace. 

Link to school website: https://www.ps154.org 

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Our mission is to bring equitable school rankings to all families in the US, so that a home purchase decision can be made with a more balanced view of school quality. Today school rankings are biased towards privileged neighborhoods, and they unfairly discount schools with the socio-economic diversity. We aim to bring equity to school rankings.

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