Call For Annex For Woodside School
City Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer joined students, parents and local leaders on the steps of P.S. 11 in Woodside last Friday Apr. 20, calling for the School Construction Authority (SCA) to build an annex to ease overcrowding at the school.
According to Van Bramer’s office, P.S. 11, located at 54-25 Skillman Ave., is projected to surpass this school year’s capacity of 117 percent. This year, PS 11 had 1,297 students with eight classes on each grade from kindergarten to the third grade, and six classes in grades four through six.
Currently, P.S. 11 houses a significant number of classrooms in transportable classroom units (TCUs) behind the school. These TCUs, since they were installed 15 years ago, have presented structural and maintenance hazards to both the teachers and students.
“After two decades of struggling with temporary units and the increased demand for schools seats projected to increase in years to come, we need a permanent solution at P.S. 11 to develop the proper learning environment for our children,” said Van Bramer in a statement. “These children are at a pivotal point in their educational process and we cannot stand by as the number of students in the area continues to rise. I will continue to push for this necessary addition to P.S. 11 because every child deserves the right to learn in a welcoming and stress-free environment.”
“The instructional expectations are very rigorous,” said Anna Efkarpides, the school’s principal. “In order to be able to provide the best support to our children we have to have the tools and the appropriate environment. This cannot be done with high registers and limited space to sit the children, display their work and include all the resources they need to master all the skills. We have teachers that are working beyond the expectations and they do provide an excellent education but it would be nice if we made it a little easier and did our part to ensure the best environment for our students.”
“CEC 30 has been working diligently with Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer and the School Construction Authority to find space solutions for schools in District 30,” said District 30 Community Education Council (CEC 30) Co-President Isaac Carmignani. “We and the Council Member in partnership with the SCA wish to find a timely and permanent solution to the overcrowding at P.S. 11 and the TCUs. With teachers working in unacceptable conditions for decades at these TCUs, we need to address this problem.”