Frequently Asked Questions

What time does school start?

The school day begins at 8:30 am, which means children should arrive at school no later than 8:20am. See the Arrivals & Dismissal page for full details.

What time does school end?

School ends at 2:50pm for full days and 11:50am for half days. Dismissal from the Pre-K and kindergarten classrooms takes place a few minutes prior to general dismissal. See the Arrivals & Dismissal page for full details.

Who will my child's teacher be?

You will receive notification toward the end of summer as to your child’s classroom and teacher assignment.

Where do I bring my child on the first day of school?

All Pre-K and Kindergarten students are dropped off and picked up in their classrooms by their parents or caregivers throughout the year. 1st graders are dropped off in the driveway at the main entrance. 2nd graders are dropped off at the ramp on W. 97th Street. Grades 3 through 5 go to the School Yard. Children who take the yellow school bus will be escorted to their classroom. See the Arrivals & Dismissal page for full details.

Will I be expected to leave at drop-off, or can I stick around in the classroom?

Although the first few days of school may be a change for some children, they adjust pretty quickly. Teachers encourage parents to give a great big hug and say goodbye at the door. Most kids adapt to the routine within a few days.

How long does it take children to adjust to kindergarten?

Most kids readily adapt to the new environment and find it to be exciting. Some may take a bit more time. Know that you have made an excellent choice in selecting PS 163 and that the teachers are warm and understanding—especially of the big change that each child has just experienced. You might want to write a brief note to the teacher introducing your child, as well.

Who can apply for the Dual Language Program?  Can I speak with other DL families to better understand the program?

Application to the Dual Language Program is open to all children entering Kindergarten, regardless of their language background. Classes are mixed between Spanish-dominant, English-dominant, and bilingual children; success in the program doesn’t require Spanish to be spoken in the home. For more information, please contact our Parent Coordinator, who can also connect you with other families in the program.

Can my child take a yellow school bus?

Yellow bus service is determined by the DOE. Free or discounted Metro Cards may be available to students based on age and distance from home to school. Be aware that it can take a week or two for the bus schedule to be set at the beginning of the school year.

What do the kids do for recess on rainy or cold days?

On “indoor recess” days, the children are taken to the gym or auditorium for story time or a movie. There are also bins of games available for each grade. Parents are needed to help out when recess is indoors; we would love for you to volunteer!

If I have any questions over the summer, who should I contact?

You can call the school office at (212) 678-2854 or get in touch with Emily Little, the PS 163 Parent Coordinator, at ELittle5@schools.nyc.gov. If you have questions about the PTA or life at PS 163, please contact a PTA President or Executive Board member.

How do I become a member of the PTA?

You are one! Simply by being a parent or guardian of a child at PS 163, you are a member of the PTA. At the first general meeting in September, you’ll learn about the many things the PTA does and the many ways you can get involved in your child’s new school. Be on the lookout for flyers announcing monthly meetings all year long. We’d love to have you join us and lend a hand!