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District 23

One of the smallest in the city, District 23 serves Ocean Hill, Brownsville, and parts of East New York, and includes some of the city's poorest neighborhoods. Single-family homes are interspersed with old brownstones, apartment buildings, large public housing projects and homeless shelters.

The schools, among the lowest-performing in the city, have been losing population, partly as a result of competition from charter schools. The Community Education Council voted in 2013 to do away with zoned schools, allowing parents to apply to any school in the district. However, parents complained that there were few viable choices.

A few bright spots include charter schools: Achievement First Brownsville Charter School gets praise from parents for its back-to-basics, no-nonsense approach. Leadership Prep Ocean Hill Charter School, a k–5 school,and Brownville Collegiate Charter School, a secondary school, both part of the Uncommon Schools network, have high test scores and a very structured approach.

Riverdale Avenue Community School, opened in fall 2012, gets high marks from parents and teachers and has a principal who trained at the progressive Bank Street College of Education. 

PS/MS 41 is the site of the city's first education program for babies and toddlers, serving children as young as six weeks.

At the middle school level, IS 392 is a safe school with high expectations and decent test scores.

District contacts

The superintendent appoints principals, evaluates schools and approves budgets:

Elementary and middle school superintendent: Mauriciere de Govia, (718) 240-3677

High school superintendent: Karen Watts, (718) 455-4635

For individual parent concerns, contact:

Elementary and middle school family support coordinator: TBD, (718) 240-3677

High school family support coordinator: Corrine Mattis, (718) 290-4635

For help with PTAs or district-wide events, contact:

Elementary and middle school family leadership coordinator: Page Best-Hardy, (718) 240-3651

High school family leadership coordinator: Gregory Hagin,  (718) 455-4635

The elected members of the Community Education Council (CEC) approve school zoning lines and advise on education policy:

District 23 office
1655 St. Mark's Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11233 - Map
Special Education

Most questions about special education can be answered by your child's teacher or principal. If you are new to New York City or your child attends private or parochial school, contact the nearest Committee on Special Education for an evaluation.

Committee on Special Education
Mariama Sandi
1665 St. Marks Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11233 - Map

Phone: 718240350035578

To enroll your child, go to the school or the nearest Family Welcome Center.

Family Welcome Center
1665 St. Marks Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11233 - Map

Phone: (718) 240-3500

This center handles both general education and special education enrollment

If these offices can not answer your questions, see DOE contacts

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