PHOTO: Reema Amin
The mayor and the chancellor meet with parents outside P.S. 146.

The final stop of the tour: P.S. 146 in East Harlem, where parents were picking up their children at the end of the school day.The mayor and chancellor greeted them, and took droves of photos with students, families, and teachers.

The school day ended without a hiccup, said Vice Principal Daniel Cortes. This year the school had a new universal literacy coach coming in, who focused on helping with K-2 reading instruction “so kids have a strong foundation,” he said.

For years the school had struggled academically, said Superintendent Alexandra Estrella, who credited Principal Mona Silfen for bringing the school back into good standing. A lot of that success, Silfen said, relates to the school implementing certain strategies, such as social-emotional learning, long before they became popular in the education world.

This was Silfen’s 20th first day as an educator at P.S. 146. The biggest change over her two decades here? Universal 3K and Pre-K, she said, which she said has boosted the school’s enrollment.

Also notable, she said, P.S. 146 has lost no teachers in the past two years. “That is a really big deal,” she said.
By Philissa Cramer
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