The Best Elementary Schools On The Upper East Side

Written by Our Town on . Posted in Arts Our Town.


In one sense, finding a public elementary school for your child is easy in New York: you go to the school you’re zoned for.

The reality, of course, is not easy at all.

The sad truth in the city is that most neighborhoods still suffer from a shortage of top-notch elementary schools, despite improvements in recent years. That has sent families scrambling to find housing in one of the desired school zones, sending real estate values in those neighborhoods soaring. Many have been priced out.

The Upper East Side is a lucky exception. The neighborhood is home to a number of top-notch elementary schools, giving parents unusual choice. Think of it as yet another perk of living in one of New York’s b est neighborhoods.

We’ve drawn up a list of the best of the best, as an aide to parents trying to decide where to settle in advance of their kids starting kindergarten. All of the schools on our list have been given an “A” by the city’s Department of Education, as part of its impressively rigorous own grading system. We’ve combined city data with numbers compiled by sites like and, and we’ve talked to parents and educators in the neighborhood about which schools we recommend. We looked at test scores, attendance numbers, and diversity stats to draw up our alphabetical list. (We limited this list to public schools, meaning that private schools — of which there are many in the neighborhood — weren’t included in the list, nor were charter schools.)

Think of this as we did, which is as one piece of the elementary-school puzzle in New York. How the pieces fit together will depend on your family and your kids.

Ella Baker School
317 E. 67th Street

P.S. 59 Beekman Hill
233 E. 56th Street

P.S. 77 Lower Lab School
1700 Third Avenue

P.S. 6 Lillie D. Blake
45 E. 81st St

P.S. 171 Patrick Henry
19 E. 103rd Street

P.S. 290 Manhattan New School
311 E. 82nd Street

P.S. 183 Robert L. Stevenson
419 E. 66th Street

P.S. 158 Baylard Taylor
1458 York Ave.

Yorkville Community School
421 E. 88th Street

Tag Young Scholars
240 E. 109th Street