A School Of Immigrants, In A City Of Immigrants, In A Country Of Immigrants

screen-shot-2016-11-23-at-11-21-13-amThe New York Times published a lovely short piece yesterday on P.S. 160, highlighting the challenges many schools in our neighborhood share:

This is a school of immigrants, in a city of immigrants, in a country of immigrants.

P.S. 160, the William T. Sampson school, sits in a zone that includes Sunset Park, and has about 1,400 students spread between two adjoining buildings. About 80 percent of the children are still learning English or just recently mastered it. They came from Mexico, Poland, Russia and Pakistan, but a vast majority are from China: 83 percent of the students speak a Chinese dialect at home. A third of all students in the school — including almost the entire kindergarten — came to this country just this year.

Like many schools, it juggles communications in a multitude of languages, issues related to large groups of their students being satellite babies, many coming from undocumented families and worried about what Trump Presidency means for them, and almost all – poor enough that the entire school qualifies for free lunch. The challenges are many, yet it captured beautifully what makes it such a special and welcoming place. Read it. 


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