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School Profile

Mark Twain is 239 for the Gifted and Talented
2401 Neptune Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11224
(718) 266-0814
See Homes For Sale in the Area
public | 6-8
County: Kings (Brooklyn)


  School Head OfficialYear
Karen Ditolla2012
  Students Getting Free LunchYear
9/7/2012otherThis school defiantly isn't as social as it gets or even as social as is healthy for a kid. Nor is getting physical. There isn't any recess, and you've got no time between classes to talk because you've only got 3 minutes to run through the whole school. We only have 2 periods of gym every week, and it's gym that tends to get cancelled, not social studies, or ELA. And the school is over-protective. You may think about that as a good thing, but how will they prepare for life when they're older?
8/13/2012parentMany people say that the students make the school great. In some way this is true. The teachers are average. Few could be considered excellent. In my point of view, a school for the "gifted and talented" should help the children reach their full potential, which the school does not always do. It often values organization skills and ambitiousness vs talent and creativity. Competitiveness can also be a problem. But in spite of that , I would choose the same school again,because compared with other schools, it was more suitable for my child. Although it may not be the best choice for others.
5/28/2012otherILOVE THIS SCHOOL. I am in 6th grade and I wish I could stay in this school all my life.All the teachers and all the extra curiculim classes are awsome. I have 4 classes, lunch, and 2 enrichments. Math talent is awsome, we play on iPads. The sixth grade trip was so much fun. I had so many fun trips.we don't get a lot of homework, we have tutoring, we have a snack,salad, and like a buffet at lunch. I LOVE MARK TWAIN is239
5/25/2012otherSeven years after graduating from Mark Twain, I look back and shudder at how traumatizing my experience was. The level of intelligence comes from the kids. Most of the teachers don't know how to teach. I left this school, (more like ran out of this school), with absolutely no self-esteem, depressed and lost. They don't teach you how to be a person in there which is something schools need. Spare your kids. If you want them to be in a socially appropriate environment, send them somewhere else. It's one thing to send your kids to the "best" schools, but it's another to keep them mentally intact. The bullying is out of this world. It's based not only on looks, but on the level of talent and one's intelligence. These were the worst 3 years of my life and these are somewhat critical years in a child's development. Do not send your children to Mark Twain.
2/29/2012otherThis is a great school. I am really happy to be in Mark Twian. It has so much to offer. Each talent does something special. Also, to let you try new things we have enrichment classes! Although it may sometimes be challenging we also have tutoring during lunch. It's very comfortable in general and the teachers make sure everyone understands everything.
1/23/2012parentMy sixth grader knew there would be serious concentration on her talent area, and that if she didn't get in as a drama "talent" she couldn't do drama, so she worked her audition piece and went to the tryout and got in. She is thrilled with everything about the school, and I have been impressed by the academic rigor, though I don't think they are overloaded with homework. It seems the student population is generally bright and driven. If it weren't so far away (in the heart of Coney Island), it would be awesome. It's still a great school.
1/19/2012otherI hate this school. You are classified by your talent and don't get to do any other extra curricular activities other than your talent. You can't be apart of the school newspaper unless you are in creative writing talent is one example. I came into that school thinking you would have many opportunities but you don't. You are dividing by clusters within your grade and can't hang around with other people in other clusters. You really don't hang around much with the people that are in your cluster expect for mainly your homeroom. Every cluster has different teachers that teach different things and at different rates so not all kids are getting the same education. The new principal isn't as fun as the old one. Unless your kid is willing to devote only to their talent and not meet many new people so be it and let them go to mark twain. They put on a act like they are the best school but behind closed doors the kids are bad and get put on lock down. You don't get much physical activity unless you are in athletics talent. You only have gym one a week for only two periods unlike the mandatory three and don't get to go outside for lunch. I wish I could rate them a ZERO.
12/19/2011parentThis is a great school. The only complain I have is that there is no locker in school. My kid has to carry a 18+ lbs school bag all day long. It would be a big plus if they can install lockers for the kids.
7/8/2011otherAs having recently graduated from the school, I can say that it is an amazing place with so much to offer. Our academics are top notch. We also have variety, having not only academic talents but also a strong performing arts area. Here the teachers are always welcoming and our principal cares so much about the school. It really is a great school.
4/17/2011parentAlmost every day my son comes home from school and tells me what he did in science talent class. He never used to tell me things about elementary school! He's learning a lot at Twain and he's being engaged and challenged by the material. One of his teachers said to me "call me any time, that's what I'm here for." My son says the principal regularly walks the halls and pops in on classes. The only thing I don't like is that they never go outside. Overall, I'm very impressed with this school.
11/29/2010parentMy child goes there and she loves it! She had to choose between IS 187, another good school (but not as good as this school) and Mark Twain and she chose this school. She doesn't regret this decision at all and I agree with her.
10/21/2010parentI love mark twain because the teachers really care about their students and the principal mrs moore makes sure all children are happy and safe...
10/9/2010parentChallenging academics, and great 'talent' classes. My son is enjoying his time here, and I am glad for the academic backbone he's receiving. Teachers are very available, and make 2 periods a week open for a cluster conference, where all the teachers your child has are available to talk. Extra help is given when needed (my son takes math tutoring one day during lunch), so that all kids can achieve. The principal is strong (although I wish she wouldn't always refer to the students as her 'babies'!) My son is very happy here,
3/23/2010parentBest public junior high school in nyc best principal and administration very talented children
3/16/2010parentThis school has bad teachers and is just down right bad.
3/10/2010studentAs an 8th grader at Mark Twain, I can proudly say that the last two years (and counting) have been a blast! Mark Twain has been and still is an amazing educational experience. Not only does it challenge students academically but also artistically. Mark Twain has helped me to grow both as a person and as a student. I will miss their Drama program =[
3/7/2010studentI completely hate this school. I am in 8th grade, and just can't wait till graduation! The teachers have no idea how to teach here!
3/6/2010studentAwesome school! Great students and teachers!
3/3/2010studentI love this school!!! The teachers are the best, and I can't wait until 7th and 8th grade!! It's so much fun being in this school, thanks to the principal, the teachers, the security guards, and everyone the helps out, making this one of the best middle schools in NYC!
12/22/2009parentI love IS 239. the principle is very organized and cares for the students and the school. the teachers are sweet and teach our children to succeed in life and every thing they do. My child has learned a lot from this school and loves it! Lets go team!
11/6/2009parentI love IS 239 because the faculty and staff are superb. Their love and care for the children are astronomical. I am appauled extremely about the interest in each student and for assuring the students meet their potential. Great Job IS 239. MY FAMILY AND I LOVE YOU ALL.
11/4/2009parentIt is wonderful, I love all of my teachers. They are so nice. I love my vocal talent and it's fun to go to school.
11/3/2009parentI love Mark Twain because of the various talent areas it offers. My daughter is a theatre student and can't wait to go to drama class each week. When kids love to go to school and succeed academically it's a no brainer- this school is getting it right!
11/3/2009parentThe school offers many classes for children to 'major' in, such as instrumental music, drama, computers, dance, drama, athletics, etc. The Principal and Staff are caring individuals.'Let's Go Team' is the school's mantra, everyone works together-principal, teachers, students and parents. The faculty keep us informed of my child's progress, as well as the happenings in the school and the community. The Principal is a professional with respect for her staff, and they have mutual respect for her. The school is absolutely terrific. Children are safe and succeed in this school. This school is one of the top middle schools in NY because of these reasons. My child is a senior and we are sad to be leaving such a wonderful school.
11/1/2009studenteveryone's wonderful and talented and so nice! and you actually learn a LOT <3 (vocal talent)
10/31/2009parentgreat school, very supportive teachers and excellent cirriculum
10/31/2009otherIt is a very fun educational extraordinary school
10/31/2009parentMy son recently started Mark Twain. He absolutely loves it!!! The classes are great and the administration is wonderful! Great place to learn.
10/31/2009parentThe curriculum is both fun and challenging - my son loves the science talent and thinks it's the best in new york city.
10/29/2009parentMark Twain's teachers are very helpful and have given my child an excellent education!
10/29/2009parentI could not ask for a better school for my daughter, she is getting a great education from the best teachers in New York. The staff is always there to help or answer any questions you have and help your child exceed in their education.
10/29/2009parentMy son just started but from I have experienced so far the teachers and faculty seem to genuinely care about the students' success and well being.
10/29/2009parentIt's a great school with a great faculty.
10/28/2009parentIS 239 makes all the efforts to let children express themselves
7/14/2009parentMark Twain is a great school but sometimes I feel that the abundance of work is extremely overwhelming to the students. They never get a break. Excessive homework, constant projects, and studying for tests never lets up. Lightening the load would make a big difference so that the kids can truly enjoy their school.
7/12/2009studentIts a very good school and also very fun and good educating from the Principal and teachers
6/11/2009studentThe teachers teach well and I enjoy my talent.
4/12/2009studentEveryone says its a difficult school, in fact it is easy to get good grades in it. All you have to do is pay attention in class. I am a senior in Twain now and I enjoy the school.
1/27/2009studentI'm an eighth grader at Mark Twain, and if you're a worried parent or student, don't be! I was frightened of attending myself, as there are so many talented students here and so much competition. But each student is given the chance to shine here. My experience here has been the absolute best--I've learned so much, and Mark Twain has shone me my love for writing. I think it has helped other students discover their dreams too. In addition, Mark Twain helps students who may fall behind. Peer tutoring is extremely helpful because it's easier for a child to learn when it is his or her peer who is explaining it. Teachers will not hesitate to help if a student needs any additional tutoring, and the faculty make learning a fun and interactive experience. So don't hesitate to come to Mark Twain; it's been one of my best experiences.
1/24/2009parentMark Twain is an awesome school. The teachers are very fun to talk to. The faculty is always helpful.
1/16/2009parentI.S. 239 outstanding! As a Senior Parent, the best choice ever made in the education of my daughter. Secure and extraordinary Team: Mrs. Moore, Mrs. Chung, Mr Seif, Mrs Conenna, All Teachers, Staff and Mr. Griffin with the Community and extra activities. What a Talent! And Gifted! paradise for our children. God Bless You Always. You all are the best!!!
12/8/2008parentMy son is currently enrolled in Twain. Overall, this is an excellent school, with a rigorous course of study and many enrichment offerings. The talent classes are truly advanced, offering course work that is not usually encountered until high school. If you're child is responsible, has a strong work ethic, and can deal with some pressure, then this is the school for them. Your child will have every opportunity to excel. However, if your child is prone to using their talent as an excuse not to work as seriously on their academics, or does not perform well under pressure, another school will be a better choice.
10/7/2008studentIm an 8th grader here and this school rocks. We got an A+ this year because we deserved it.
9/5/2008parentIf you are a 90% average student or higher - this is a great school, however, anything below that, the school does not know how to teach to. I am very happy my child is now done with this school. 'Gifted and Talented' doesn t mean your child is up to the academic level of 90% coming into that school. I gave them a bright, happy and willing to learn child and got back a burnt out, unhappy child that now lacked self-esteem. The school is safe, the curriculum is good but the teachers are clueless on how to work with children that have different learning styles and needs. The teachers could use some training! The only ray of sunshine to the teaching staff there is the drama teacher - Mr. DeCaro. He is what helped my child get through the last 3 years. I am just glad it is over.
4/10/2008studentI love mark twain. The teachers are always there for us and they help us when we need it. Everything in this school is amazing.
3/30/2008studenti love this school they help me if i need it and they listen when i need them to
2/25/2008studenti am a student in mark twain. the teachers in the school are very nice and helpful. i am having good lessons about differ places.the teachers push us up to do our best on stae tests!i love this school !
1/29/2008parentGreat experience for my child. Caring and capable teachers, responsive administration. The Talent areas really allow the children to shine.
1/11/2008studentI think this school deserves a five star rating because when I heard about it I had to go there.
9/13/2007former studentIt's been two years since I've left this school, and I must say that it had been the greatest experience EVER! When I first got there, I didn't feel like doing anything except slack off, but I realized the atmosphere around me was very competitive, so it made me want to do more. Also, my teachers pushed me hard, making me do the best I could, and I can proudly say that it is one of the best schools in New York City. Although the principal was a bit of an over-reactor, and sometimes students were accused wrongly for silly things, nothing else was bad. I suggest if your child is smart in something like mathematics, sciences, writing, etc, let them try out for this school! It'll be the greatest choice yet!
6/30/2007parentI have just graduated my 2nd child from MT. Enough cannot be said about the environment - caring, diverse, inspiring, energetic, demanding. The teachers, administration, school safety, students and parents all work together as a team for each and every child. Indeed, each day begins with 'Let's Go Team!' called out over the PA system by the energetic and enigmatic principal. She sets the tone and the tone is perfect.
6/29/2007parentThis school appears to be one of the best schools in the city or at least it's bragged about that way. The truth of the matter is it's a school for extremely bright stundents who would excel no matter where they were. If you are extremely bright you will do well. Unfortunately the most creative talented children are not always driven academically. This is where the school fails miserably. It seems as the Principal and staff are all more interested in keeping a reputation rather than making a a truly all around functioning school open to all children. Many of the administration and faculty are not equipped to deal with truly creative children who have minds of their own.
6/25/2007studentI go to Mark Twain, and I think that it is a great school, with many different types of diversities and different talents. This school has so many extracurricular activities, like piano, drums, art, computer, social studies, media and many others. The principal is also very good and makes sure that everything gets done correctly. The teachers are so nice. They know a lot about what they teach and more. Not only that, they are really easy to talk to. Parents are involved a lot. For example, they get invited to parties, get involved with PTA and many more. In the school, they are very protective at the school and they make sure that nothing goes wrong. I am in Mark Twain, and this is the first time that I have ever been sad that school is over! I highly recommend this school to any parent/student looking for a good school.
12/24/2006former studentI graduated from Mark Twain last year. It is absolutely the best!!!!!! The teachers are really nice and they care alot about the welfare of their students. the students are very nice and enthusiatic. The relationship between everyone is amazing, i wouldn't suggest anywhere else for a kid to start and finish the middle school experience.
10/15/2006studentMark Twain is an amazing school. The Mark Twain 'family' is very caring and supportive towards every child. The programs and academics at this school are very hard to beat. Students look forward to coming to school everyday and feeling proud to have the Mark Twain spirit.
10/7/2006studentTo tell you the truth, I go to this school right now and I'm in 6th grade. I love evrything: the people,teachers,classes,etc. It's wonderful!
5/19/2006parentExcellent caring teachers
5/9/2006parentMy son is graduating from Mark Twain this June. For the most part, this was a very good educational and social experience for him. The teachers are experienced and committed and, particularly in the 6th grade, the cluster concept, where the major subject teachers meet together each week, was helpful in fostering a good knowledge of the students. The classes are rigorous and the honors program allows for acceleration in individual subjects. My son enjoys the intensive talent period, which helps him to focus on the academic periods, too. I also like the fact that there are a variety of once-a-week classes like cooking, technology (shop), and art, which expose him to different skills. The biggest negative for him was the very limited afterschool activities (partly due to being a magnet school located at one end of Bklyn). This year he's finally in the afterschool/Saturday basketball program, which he loves.
5/8/2006parentThis school is well rounded, culturally diverse and academically advanced. Mark Twain has one of the most encouraging staffs, dynamic principal, elite assistant principals, the best safety agents and one the most electrifying Parents' Assn. in the entire NYC school system! Mark Twain is a gifted and talent middle school whose academic core is heightened by its profound dedication to the arts. My child is a solid-A student with a vocal concentration and studying a foreign language. The students recieve physical and health education to balance out their curriculum. As a parent it is with great appreciation for the reputation of Mark Twain that I supported my child's decision to audition and test for the school. Once accepted into their vocal program, my family has continued to focus our efforts around my child's success at I.S. 239. The senior students are well prepared to compete for the best HS in NYC.
4/26/2006parentThis school is great. My son went here and is now in styvesaunt. The best
4/24/2006teacherThis is an excellent school with a great art/math/science program. Probably best in the city.
4/18/2006parentSupposed to be one of the best junior highs in NYC, but teachig quality is not all that great with very little teachers involvement and after school activities. In too mamy cases homework never checked or went over and it seems like teachers simply do not care...
1/18/2006parentVery Good Principal: Involved, energetic, caring. Students are made to feel welcome, accepted and cared for.
8/19/2005former studentThis school is really great. I love the way classes are organized. The staff are also great.
7/13/2005parentMy son has been at the school for two years and I feel he has gotten a superior education and is far more prepared than his friends at other middle schools for high school. With one or two exceptions, the teachers have been wonderful. The APs and principal deal with any parental concerns in a very prompt and considerate manner. Some kids do get very competitive about their grades, but I think it's the ones who are feeling pressure from parents. For the most part, the kids at this school all want to be high-acheivers. That can be good for some kids who enjoy the competition, but maybe too much for some.
4/12/2005parentSchool focus is on academics. Teachers & admin are very caring & supportive. Entering 6th graders are treated with kid gloves, trained to study & work hard. In 7th grade the bar is raised, more is expected, and the kids are ready to meet it. 8th grade is exciting and rewarding. Most kids seem to go to good and great schools. Most get their 1st of 2nd choice. Of a graduating class of about 400 this year, 81 made Sty, 93 made Tech, 54 made LaGuardia, 9 made Bronx. Lots go on to Brooklyn jewel schools. Spirit and support take Twain kids far indeed.
3/15/2005studentI'm currently going to Mark Twain. I'm in 8th grade and to tell you it is trulty the greatest school in New York City. Thanks to my teachers I made it in the National Junior Honor Society. This year (2005) many students made it in to Brooklyn Tech, LaGuuardia, and all other special schools. We trutly improve our talents and we also improve are knowledge.
7/15/2004parentMy son just completed 7th grade. This school is fabulous. You can't ask for better academics. Programming runs smoothly. The teachers are accessible. Even though he has to leave the house at 7 AM to travel by private bus for an 8 AM school start time, my son loves the school. The only weakness? The kids aren't allowed out into the school yard at lunch time so they're in the building for the whole day.
7/15/2004parentMy son just finished 7th grade. This school is fabulous. You can't ask for better academics. The programming runs smoothly. The teachers are accessible. My son has to commute by private bus but he doesn't mind the ride - it's a social time with his friends.
1/7/2004parentThis is my child's first year at Mark Twain. It is currently under a new principal so I will not comment on principal leadership. However the staff and assistant principals, in particular the sixth grade asssitant principal, have gone above and beyond to be nurturing and welcoming to new students. The school is very large and can be intimidating to new students. There is room for improvement in this area as far as acclamating new students. However, the curriculum is challenging , interesting and far exceeds the standards. I highly reccommend this school as a consideration.
8/24/2003otherMy child has been attending this school for the past year. She described it as a big party, that is eager to learn. in the beginning of august she went to buy her party supplies. The invitation to the party that I.S.239 has given her, will be remembered for years to come. Thankyou for making it so easy to move on for my daughter.

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