The International High School

Mission Statement

The International High School at LaGuardia Community College offers a multicultural educational environment for recent arrivals and serves students with varying degrees of limited English proficiency. A collaborative project between the New York City Board of Education and LaGuardia Community College of the City University of New York, this school offers a high school/college curriculum combining substantive study of all subject matter with intensive study and reinforcement of English.

The mission of The International High School is to enable each of our students to develop the linguistic, cognitive and cultural skills necessary for success in high school, college, and beyond. We are committed to the following educational principles.

Educational Philosophy

  1. Limited English proficient students require the ability to understand, speak, read, and write English with near-native fluency to realize their full potential within an English-speaking society.
  2. In an increasingly interdependent world, fluency in a language other than English must be viewed as a resource for the student, the school, and the society.
  3. Language skills are most effectively learned in context and emerge most naturally in purposeful, language-rich, interdisciplinary study.
  4. The most successful educational programs are those that emphasize high expectations coupled with effective support systems, as mirrored in our portfolio presentation requirement for graduation.
  5. Individuals learn best from each other in heterogeneous, collaborative groupings.
  6. Career-oriented internships facilitate language acquisition as well as contribute a significant service to the community.
  7. The most effective instruction takes place when teachers actively participate in the school decision-making process, including instructional program design, curriculum development and material selection.
The faculty of The International High School has organized the curriculum of the entire school around interdisciplinary thematic study with great success.

Currently, six teams of teachers have each developed thematically based courses of study that last for two years. Students choose a corridor, a Junior Institute Team paired with a Senior Institute Team, for their four years at the school. This structure provides for a balance of exposure by focusing on the humanities and math/science/technology. Teams create curriculum, schedule students and teachers, determine assessment procedures, provide guidance and counseling, and allocate resources for instructional supplies and materials. These interdisciplinary teams have been responsible for improved student attendance and achievement.

The college campus setting provides us with many facilities not often found in public high schools. High school students take college courses with matriculated college students for both high school and college credit, thus increasing their access to curricular offerings. By graduation, nearly all of our graduates have successfully completed at least one college course. Our students typically bring a wide range of experiences, linguistic abilities, maturity, and ability to use resources around them to successfully negotiate the challenges they encounter in school and life.