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New Peck Slip School Gets Thumbs Up from Parents

LOWER MANHATTAN — Kindergartners bounded out of the first day of classes at The Peck Slip School Thursday, as their parents voiced approval of the school so far. 

The much-needed school is starting with a fraction of its future student body 44 kindergarten students in two classes inside temporary space in the Education Department's Tweed Courthouse until construction of its new building is complete in 2015.

Parents gushed about the new school's principal, Maggie Siena, who was formerly the principal of P.S. 150

"I absolutely love Maggie," said Jasmine Valentine, 32, who lives in the financial district with her 5-year-old son Jayden.

Valentine said she researched a number of elementary schools in the area before discovering the new Peck Slip School.

Siena told DNAinfo.com that she was looking forward to continuing to build a relationship with her parents and students and "spending some time out in the school yard in the morning, and chatting with parents at the end of the day, and getting to know them and their kids."

She added that she'd been chatting with parents since long before class started, meeting many of them in person during a tour of the school in July.

"For many months, it was just me and I was the parents' first point of contact," Siena said.

Lisa Gorke, 38, who relocated to another apartment with her husband Vance, 45, and their son Vance, 4, just to attend Peck Slip. 

"She's like the CEO of the school," Gorke said. "She keeps it very family focused."

Paul Feldsher, 50, said he uprooted his family to enroll his 5-year-old twins Lev and Esther in the Peck Slip kindergarden classes, making his way from Long Island to Lower Manhattan.

“We moved here to go to this school,” he said. "We're very impressed with everything."