Parent Handbook Section 3
We need your commitment to ensure that your student is here for the full day of instruction regularly. Attendance is one of the measures used to determine grade promotion - the NYC School Chancellor’s regulations require that each student achieves a minimum of 90% attendance every school year. Make it a goal to achieve 100% attendance.
Tardiness disrupts classes already in progress, is disrespectful to the class and negates our efforts (and parent efforts) to teach students the importance of being on time. Students who are not with their teacher at 8:20 AM are late to school! This means that at 8:20 AM,
- Students in grades K-5 should be lined up in their class areas in the schoolyard
- Middle school students should be seated in their homerooms
Grades K-5 students arriving after 8:20 AM must go to the office and obtain a late pass. Younger students will be escorted to their classroom by Anderson staff; parents may not bring late children to their classrooms.
Grades 6-8 students arriving after the Middle School doors are closed at 8:18 AM are late to school. They must enter the building through the main entrance (the five green doors on W. 77th St. under the sign William J. O’Shea Campus), go downstairs using only staircase E (next to the School Safety desk) and get a late pass with the Teaching Assistant waiting outside of room G31 (the Assistant Principals’ office.) In addition, to be considered on time to school, students must be in homeroom with the teacher at 8:20 AM – NOT at the lockers, NOT in the bathroom. Any student who is not in his or her 1st period class at 8:20 is LATE and must get a late pass. This means that students can enter the building on time, but still be marked late if they dawdle at the lockers or in the bathroom!
Any middle school student arriving after 8:30 must go directly into the main office (room 102) for a late pass.
3.3 Reporting an Absence
Parents whose child is going to be absent should call the Anderson Attendance Hotline that morning: 212-595-7193; press 1 (for current Anderson parents), then press 2 and leave their child’s name, class or homeroom #, and a brief reason for the absence. Students who have been absent from school for 3 days or longer due to an illness need to bring a note from a parent or a doctor stating the reason for their absence. If parents know ahead of time that their child must be out of school, they should please send a note stating which days will be missed and the reason for the upcoming absence.
3.4 Extended Vacations
Extended holiday vacations and vacations at times other than the official school breaks are not sanctioned. For unavoidable extended trips due to family illness or a death in the family, advance documentation (a copy of child’s airline ticket and contact information) must be provided to the main office to avoid triggering an automated report to city agencies. Advance homework will not be provided; students will be caught up upon return.
Breakfast is free for any student who would like it, on any day they wish; no advance notice is necessary. Any child who will be eating school breakfast should arrive between 7:55-8:00 AM, but no earlier, as there is no staff on duty to supervise children before 7:55. All any child needs to do is tell an adult that they would like breakfast and they will be escorted to the cafeteria. After 8:15, once they have finished eating, staff will:
- Kindergarten - Grade 4 - escort the children back to the auditorium to join their classes
- Grades 5-8 - release the students to the downstairs locker hallway
Students are supervised in the cafeteria by school aides, assistant teachers, and parent Learning Leaders.
- Grades K-4 Lunch: 10:55 – 11:20 p.m.
- Grades 5-8 Lunch: 11:20 – 11:45 p.m.
School lunch is free for all students! Any child may get lunch, they simply need to get on the lunch line or tell any adult in the cafeteria. School Food menus can be found online at
Nut and Other Food Allergies
Several students at our school have food allergies. For these students, food can represent a danger and must be carefully monitored. It is the family's responsibility to notify the school of a child's allergies. The family and school team will work together to develop a plan that accommodates the child's needs throughout the school day.
Lunch From Home
If your child brings lunch from home, please be aware that it will not be refrigerated at school, nor can food be reheated. You may want to purchase an insulated lunch bag and reusable food containers, to reduce waste.
With their parent’s written permission, middle school students can participate in off-campus lunch. Detailed instructions and permission forms are sent to seventh and eighth grade parents early in the school year and to sixth grade parents before the second half of the year.
- Grades K-4 Recess: 11:20 – 11:45 p.m.
- Grades 5-8 Recess: 10:55 – 11:20 p.m.
During recess students are supervised by school aides, assistant teachers, and parent volunteers. Balls, hula hoops and other playground equipment are available for use by all students. We also have a playground activity supervisor who organizes games for the kids; all children are encouraged to participate in these activities. During inclement weather, students have recess in the cafeteria with board games (Middle School) and other activities provided by their teacher (elementary school). Children benefit from vigorous mental and physical exercise. Outside play is recommended by the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. We will take the children out for recess as often as we can during the winter months, using a combination of factors including temperature, wind speed, and precipitation in determining whether to go outside to play. Parents should please make sure that children come to school dressed warmly. Hats, mittens, scarves and warm jackets or coats are a must! We can always peel off layers if it gets warm. Sometimes the day starts off cool and warms up, and sometimes the wind picks up and recess is cooler than when the day began. A light sweater, sweatshirt, or fleece is appropriate for these days.
3.8 Afternoon Dismissal and Pick-up
Parents of students in grades K-5 will provide the teacher with a weekly dismissal plan. Any changes to that plan must be sent to the teacher ahead of time, in a backpacked note with a date and signature. Teachers are not able to check email during the school day, so in the case of emergency dismissal changes only, parents should call the main office.
Grades K-5 Pick-up
Grades K-5 students are picked up in the schoolyard. Parents and caregivers enter via the W. 76th St. gate and meet their child(ren) in the school yard in the elementary class line-up area, unless he or she is taking the bus home or taking a Wingspan after school class. The gate will open at 2:35 PM and classes will begin to come out and line up near the red sign with their class number and teacher’s name. Parents should wait there for the line to come to the fence. For every child's safety, parents and caregivers need to make sure to have their child(ren) say goodbye to the teacher directly. This is customarily done with a handshake and the teacher making eye contact with the retrieving adult. Please remember that pick-up is not an appropriate time for an extended conversation with the teacher. The teacher's work day ends at 2:40PM Wednesday through Friday. On Mondays and Tuesdays, teachers have meetings immediately after dismissal. Parents can make an appointment to speak with their teacher during Parent Engagement hours on Tuesdays from 2:45-3:30 PM.
Grades K-5 Late Pick-up
Please don’t be late to pick up, as the teacher’s day officially ends at 2:40 pm. If you arrive after 2:40 pm, your child may have been escorted to the main office, room 102. You will need to walk around the building to enter through the main doors on W. 77th St. Please remember to sign out your child in the dismissal book before leaving the office.
Grades K-5 Inclement Weather
In inclement weather, all Kindergarten through fifth graders still come into the yard – parents and caregivers should already be there with umbrellas, waiting to whisk kids away. We will notify families of an alternate pick up plan only if there are dangerous conditions in the yard (such as ice). This happens rarely.
Grades K-5 Play Date Procedure
If families have arranged for their child to go home with another child directly after school, a note must be sent to the classroom teacher that morning which includes the date, the name of the person who will be picking up the child that day and a parent signature. PLEASE DO NOT contact the school after 2:00 pm with any non-emergency pick-up changes! Students are not released to anyone who is not listed on the office blue card without written notification. Students may NOT ride home on a bus that is not assigned to them.
Grades K-6 School Bus Dismissal
Students riding the bus home are brought to the cafeteria, where they wait at a table assigned to their route. At 2:40 p.m., school staff begins to escort children out the 76th St. cafeteria door and onto the waiting buses. Students may not ride home on a bus that is not assigned to them.
Grades 6-8 Dismissal
At 2:40 p.m. students in grades 6-8 are dismissed from the middle school doors on W. 77th Street and are asked to leave the immediate school area within 10 minutes. Middle school students do not need to be met by an adult; they can leave on their own at dismissal. However, in accordance with DOE regulations, students may NEVER leave the building on their own PRIOR to dismissal time, even with a parent’s written or verbal permission. They must be signed out in the main office by someone 18 years of age or older until they are in high school.
No early pick-up will be accommodated during lunch/recess from 10:55-11:45 AM nor after 2:00 PM, except in the case of an emergency or illness. We cannot release students early for doctor’s appointments (unless related to that day’s illness) or after-school instruction for sports or tutoring. With proper documentation, children may be released at 2:10 PM one day a week to attend religious instruction.
Half Day Dismissal Procedures
On half days of school, the day ends for all students at 11:40 a.m. (half days are Parent Teacher Conference days in November and March, and clerical days in June.) Students in grades 6-8 are dismissed from the AMS doors on W. 77th Street. Grades K-5 students are picked up in the schoolyard. Parents and caregivers enter via the W. 76th St. gate and meet their child(ren) in the school yard in the elementary class line-up area, unless he or she is taking the bus home or participating in Wingspan's special half day program. The gate will open at 11:35 a.m. and classes will begin to come out at the same time.
3.9 After School Activities and Programs
Wingspan After school
Our after school program is run by Wingspan Arts, an outside provider. It begins on the first day of school and ends on the last Friday of the school year. The Anderson after school course schedule and registration links may be found online at www.wingspanarts.org under “School Programs”. Students enrolled in a Wingspan after school class are escorted to Wingspan's designated area of the cafeteria by their teacher or assistant teacher and eat a snack provided by Wingspan until their class begins. Classes run until 5:00 and families may pick up their children from 5:00-5:30 PM (preferred) with late pick-ups from 5:30-6:00 PM. The O'Shea building closes at 6:00 PM. Enter through the main entrance on 77th St. and check in with the school safety agent there, before proceeding to the cafeteria to pick up your child.
Outside After school Programs
Students enrolled in outside programs that pick up at Anderson will be escorted to the main office by their teacher or assistant teacher. A representative of the program will come to the office to sign out your child.
Chess, Academies, Sports Activities
Students participating in these activities are brought to the main lobby after the program is over where parents and caregivers may pick them up. Pick-up times vary, so families should please refer to the information sent home by the teacher.