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creating enriching experiences

PS 50 Talfourd is a public school in Queens [District 28] that serves 734 students (44% Hispanic, 20% Asian, 20% Black, 18% ELL, 21% SPED). After a hardworking and successful year from the students, Principal Manjarrez wanted to reward her high achieving scholars with an educational and fun summer program. Practice Makes Perfect stepped in and created an engaging and unique summer program for 40 students from the 3rd and 4th grade. The program included a variety of unique activities and opportunities such as field trips to Google, the United Nations, and Dirtt. Students got to meet a UN secretary and toured the Google headquarters in Midtown. At Dirtt, students learnt about virtual reality. They also got to design and experience their own virtual classrooms.


Developing stronger readers

Baychester Middle School is a school in the Bronx [District 11] that serves 300 students (68% Black, 27% Latino, 4% ELL, 22% SPED). A subset of students entered the school reading 2-4 years below grade level. Practice Makes Perfect supported students 2x per week, with a 5:1 student to Instructor ratio, for 45 minutes using an adaptive reading platform called LightSail. After just three months, students had read over 7,000 minutes and had grown an average of 126 lexile levels. Students at the middle school level make an average growth of 52 - 87 lexile levels. Many students reported voluntarily using the adaptive reading platform at home during breaks and on weekends. The program was a success – 33 out of 36 (92%) applicable students experienced growth in their reading level.

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Since starting our partnership in 2016, the school has gone from 11% proficient in math and 14% proficient in ELA to 25% proficient in math and 29% proficient in ELA.

partnering towards proficiency

PS 1 Courtlandt is an elementary school based in the Bronx [District 07]. The school currently has 598 students enrolled (76% Hispanic, 22% Black, 31% ELL, 25% SPED). Starting in 2016, Principal Perdomo partnered with Practice Makes Perfect to customize a 4-week summer literacy program for 60 1st and 2nd graders. The course focused mainly on reading comprehension, and took place from Monday to Thursday for 4 hours per day. Half of the students in the program were English Language Learners. Prior to partnering with Practice Makes Perfect in 2016, only 14% of students achieved a proficient English score on state exams. By 2018, 26% of students achieved proficiency on state exams. The school was also originally rated “Needs Improvement” in helping ELL students on state exams. Two years later, it is now rated two levels higher as “Good”.


differentiation for high-flyers

PS 12 is a public school located in Brooklyn [District 17] that currently serves 223, of which 72% are Black, 23% are Hispanic, 10% are ELLs, and 30% are SPED. The school has been experiencing shrinking grade sizes in the 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade due to charter schools taking a significant portion of enrollment. Consequently, classes could not be organized by student performance and teachers became overwhelmed with having to balance the varying levels of understanding in a single classroom. Practice Makes Perfect’s push-in program provided 3 qualified Interventionists – one for each of the 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade classes. Interventionists visited the school 3 times a week for 3 hours, and supported 30 students in the classroom (10 in each classroom), working specifically with high-achieving students. This allowed teachers to focus on struggling students while being assured that high-achievers continued to progress at their ideal learning pace.

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With the Support of Six Interventionists, PS 89 went from 31% proficient in math to 35%.

forming strong family community ties

PS 89 is a pre-K-8 public school in the Bronx [District 11] that was looking to get more insight from parents on how they were doing. The school serves 1425 students (55% Hispanic, 19% Black, 22% ELL, 18% SPED). In order to achieve stronger parent engagement, Practice Makes Perfect provided a team of 3 callers to survey parents and consequently achieved a 20% higher response rate than when PS 89 conducted the citywide survey. We then collected this feedback from parents and provided a report detailing key insights on the school’s performance, as well as recommendations for future improvement. The report included PS 89’s net promoter score, and also what parents liked/disliked about the school. In addition, a PTA information sheet was created in English and translated into Albanian, Bengali, Arabic and Spanish. Practice Makes Perfect helped Principal Martinez better understand how parents feel about their children’s education, which allowed them to effectively build strong family-community ties going forward.


preventing teacher burnout

York Early College Academy (YECA) is a 6-12 public school in Jamaica, Queens [District 28] that serves 643 students (50% Black, 26% Asian, 2% ELLs, 14% SPED). Whilst YECA always had Saturday school programs running, the main issue Principal Angeles faced was burnout among his teaching staff who originally led the Saturday Academy program. To combat this, Practice Makes Perfect provided four additional instructors to supplement the Saturday Academy program. The program ran alongside the original Saturday school programs and took place from 9am-12pm. The Saturday Academy had four Interventionists that focused on college readiness standards in Math and close-reading for ELA.

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partnering for college awareness

P.S./I.S. 218 (Rafael Hernandez Dual Magnet School) is a K-8 dual-language (English/Spanish) school in the Bronx [District 09]. The school serves 1038 students, 91% of which are Hispanic, 29% are ELLs, and 19% are SPED. For the past two years, Practice Makes Perfect has been a reliable and consistent partner running the college access programs. Practice Makes Perfect provided a comprehensive suite of services that expose college life and the college application process to students and parents in a fun and exciting way. This included a wide range of activities such as college field trips (to schools like Yale, Columbia, Culinary Institute of America, Long Island University, UCONN, SUNY Albany), college carnivals, kick-off assemblies, parent/student workshops, and professional development sessions. Practice Makes Perfect also provided bilingual Interventionists to ensure that the college access activities were equally accessible to students who weren’t fluent in English.


extended learning time with outcomes

New Preparatory Middle School is a public school in Jamaica, Queens [District 28] that serves 474 students (45% Black, 22% Hispanic, 13% ELLs, 20% SPED) and had a cohort of 18 IEP students who were below grade level in math. Principal Louissaint reached out to Practice Makes Perfect to create a differentiated intensive tutoring program so their 18 students would make progress towards proficiency in math. The program ran three times a week (70 minutes each time) from January to April, with 4 Interventionists specifically assigned to the school. By the end of the program, 16 out of 18 students met the promotional cut scores for the New York State Math assessment.

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Over the Last Three Years of our partnership, the school has gone from 19% proficient in math and 22% proficient in ELA to 29% proficient in math and 35% proficient in ELA. New Prep has moved from a Renewal STatus to a Reward Status.

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Intensive math tutoring

PS 399 is a pre-K through secondary education public school in Brooklyn, NY [District 17] that serves 261 students (74% Black, 12% ELLs, 15% SPED). Principal Williams came to Practice Makes Perfect in early 2018 to get a boost for 59 of her students to achieve grade-level proficiency in math. From March 19th to April 30th, Practice Makes Perfect conducted a pull-out program for 3 hours a day from Monday - Thursday. This involved taking weaker students out of class to concentrate intensively on math. We sent 6 Interventionists that each worked with 30 students at a time. Over the course of 19 sessions, Interventionists taught the math lessons according to college-readiness standards and at the end of the program, 57 out of 59 students met the state promotion criteria in math - a 97% success rate.


After school student clubs

MS 223 (The Laboratory School of Finance and Technology) is a public middle school in the Bronx [District 07] serving 719 students (81% Hispanic, 17% Black, 12% ELLs, 26% SPED). Principal Gonzalez reached out to Practice Makes Perfect because teachers were overwhelmed with having to plan and conduct both in-school and after-school learning. Practice Makes Perfect supplied 5 Interventionists and had them focus on running the after-school electives. The electives ranged from book clubs, mock trial, chemistry, step dance class, chorus music, and hip-hop music class. The electives ran 2 - 3 times a week for an hour and fifteen minutes. Ultimately, the after-school program was a win-win. Teachers had more time and energy to dedicate to raising student achievement and students still got to experience engaging and educational after-school activities led by passionate Practice Makes Perfect staff.

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In just the last year, Fannie Lou Hammer Middle School has increased from 4% to 16% proficient in math.

Accelerating Math Mastery

Fannie Lou Hamer is a middle school located in the Bronx, NY [District 12] serving 289 students (74% Hispanic, 23% Black, 19% ELLs, 24% SPED). Prior to Practice Makes Perfect, students at the school were performing low in math, with only 4% reaching proficiency. Principal Wilson enlisted Practice Makes Perfect in creating and running an intensive tutoring program in Math during the school’s extended learning time. The program ran from December 2018 to May 2019, two times a week, an hour and a half each time. Practice Makes Perfect had 13 Interventionists assist a total of 51 students, with each Interventionist being assigned to a group of four to five students. Interventionists dedicated tutoring sessions on improving students’ math fluency by focusing on the college readiness standards in Math and by the end of the program in May, all 51 kids met the promotion criteria in math.


Consistent instructional support

MS 129 is a public middle school in the Bronx [District 12] that serves over 500 students (29% Black, 66% Hispanic, 13% ELLs, 30% SPED). After having a math teacher abruptly leave in December, Principal Granda enlisted Practice Makes Perfect’s help in supporting the substitute teacher. Practice Makes Perfect brought in two qualified Interventionists that went to the school five days a week from January to June to support an 8th grade general education class and a 7th grade 12:1:1 class. Throughout the program, the main goal was to assist the substitute teacher, provide consistency, and help prepare students in small groups for the upcoming math state exam. Interventionists also supported the staff members during parent-teacher conferences. In June, the school reported that 41 out of 42 students made the cut scores, exceeding the school’s expectations.

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Over the past Four years, MS 129 has grown very slowly as a school from 18% to 24% proficiency in Math, but this past year with the support of six Interventionists, the school moved from 24% to 32% proficiency in Math.

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Over the Last Three Years of our partnership, the school has gone from 21% proficient in math and 28% proficient in ELA to 29% proficient in math and 35% proficient in ELA.

Customized Math Tutoring

PS 103 is a public elementary school in the Bronx [District 11] that serves over 928 kids (49% Black, 43% Hispanic, 18% ELLs, 22% SPED). Principal Reyes mainly reached out to Practice Makes Perfect because the school had almost two dozen 5th grade students who were below grade level in math. After some initial testing, Practice Makes Perfect identified that many of the kids were 2 years behind grade level in math, meaning a new curriculum had to be set up. Using Achieve The Core, Practice Makes Perfect scaffolded the curriculum and mapped college readiness standards from the 5th grade down to the 3rd grade to ensure students possessed a solid foundation before working their way up again. Using the tailored curriculum, 6 Interventionists were sent to the school from October to April, twice a week, and for an hour and a half each time. By the end of the program, our preliminary data showed that 12/19 students met the promotional criteria in math.


literacy through phonics

PS 82 is a public school in Queens, NY [District 28] serving 600 students. The student population was made up of 65% Hispanic, 24% Asian, 34% ELLs, and 18% in SPED. Principal Rodriguez came to Practice Makes Perfect mainly because students in the 1st and 2nd grade were not able to read. Practice Makes Perfect conducted a nine week pull-out program from February 2018 to May 2018. The program consisted of 60 students in the 1st and 2nd grade, and was run three times a week by two trained Interventionists. Interventionists targeted improvement in phonics by teaching the students Fundations as well as teaching basic sight words. This involved pre and post quizzes to track progress, review of the vowels and letters each time, and spending approximately 4 lessons per short vowel. In the beginning of the lesson, many students had difficulty differentiating between similar sounding letters (B and D), and most scored a 4 out of 8 in recognizing the different vowels. By the end, students scored a 7 out of 8 or even 8 out of 8.

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