Welcome Letter from Principal Jane Murphy

September 5, 2018

Dear Families,

Welcome to the 2018-19 school year! We are especially excited this year because it is the first time in our long history that we are welcoming students from Pre-Kindergarten through Fifth Grade to our school.

In taking our new name, The Locke School of Arts and Engineering, we honor the legacy of Alain Leroy Locke and the rich history of the Harlem Renaissance. Alain Locke was a writer, philosopher, educator and patron of the arts who was born on September 13, 1885 and passed from this life on June 9, 1954. He was considered the “Dean” of the Harlem Renaissance, and he believed that the arts were the key to liberating the people of Harlem.

This year we are also offering an afterschool program here at the school through our Beacon Grant, in partnership with the Boys Club of New York (BCNY). We’ll offer arts and engineering classes as well as reading and writing support from 2:40 -5:30pm. Be sure to speak with Monika Vargas, Parent Coordinator as soon as possible to participate in the afterschool program.

As members of The Locke School community, your children will continue to engage in work and play enriched with arts and engineering to prepare them for the 21st century. Our day begins at 8:20am for all grades. Please make every effort to have your child arrive on time so that they don’t miss out on anything!

Here’s another thing you can do to support your child’s learning at home. In the first few weeks of school, children will be assigned reading homework. We focus on reading as the year begins because is extremely important to establish good reading habits at home. Please help your child to find a comfortable, quiet space and time to read each night, and establish a routine for reading at home. We also encourage families to share a read aloud time, when you can enjoy good stories together no matter how ‘grown up’ or how skilled your children become.

There is an old African proverb that says, “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” At the Locke School we have come together, merging the best of PS 185 and PS 208 to serve this community throughout the elementary years. It remains our mission to sustain a safe and inclusive environment where every child will discover the genius within. We are so excited you are joining us on this long and happy journey.

Your voice is important to us at the Locke school. We’ve created a variety of ways families can participate in school and make meaningful contributions to the community. Please see Monika in the coming weeks for instructions on how to download The Locke School application for your phone so you’ll never miss an opportunity or an event.

I’m looking forward to a wonderful year of learning and growing together here at The Locke School of Arts and Engineering!


Jane Murphy, Principal