University Heights High School is a New York City Department of Education (DOE) school and a member of the newly established New York City Empowerment Zone. The high school has been a member of the Coalition of Essential Schools (CES), and it is a founding member of the Center for Collaborative Education (CCE). We are a part of the New York Performance Standards Consortium, which was founded in 1997. University Heights is a coeducational, college preparatory school enrolling approximately 450 students in grades 9 to 12. While the student body is multicultural, the majority of the population is of Hispanic or African-American ethnicity. Students from throughout the five boroughs of New York City attend University Heights High School, however, most reside in the Bronx.
Our mission statement is simple. Our students will meet or exceed high learning standards at the secondary school level. Our community of learners includes students, staff, parents, and university/community partners. Our focus encompasses the “whole person” as learner, and there is an insistence that we use our minds in order to develop intellectually, socially, physically, and ethically. We continually seek to refine and expand necessary academic/social skills, bodies of knowledge, values and habits of mind that we believe are essential to our becoming and being productive and well-educated individuals. Our goals are two fold:
- to prepare students who demonstrate mastery of habits of learning for graduation
- to maximize the success of all members of our community
We emphasize respect for oneself and for others, while understanding and appreciating that respect is a byproduct of achievement.
We recognize that for students to attain high standards, they must be encouraged to take responsibility for their own actions/learning. Faculty and staff work alongside students, helping them to achieve high academic standards as well as helping them to achieve a greater understanding of their role as future leaders of our community.
University Heights is a school dedicated to traditional goals: sound academic performance/preparation for college and beyond in an informal setting that supports and respects the individual. Our aim is to produce confident, independent thinkers who excel beyond the norm and are unafraid to accept the challenges of functioning at the optimum levels of their abilities. We seek to create a community where cooperation rather than competition between students is valued and where mutual trust between teacher and student plays a central role in shaping the learning experience. University Heights is committed to providing a setting where pressures for sameness are reduced and the entire community treats students’ individuality with respect and dignity. Through our teaching, we attempt to create classrooms in which the give and take of ideas and the honing of the work process enable students to thrive. In our classrooms, thoughtful and passionate learners, become willing participants able to explore new areas of intellectual growth and to apply that learning beyond the classroom. These are the founding principles of the Coalition for Essential Schools (CES). In order to be promoted and to graduate, students must attain the required credits for each grade level and pass all appropriate exams/assessment vehicles. We have been granted a waiver by the State Education Department. The waiver requires University Heights to administer the English Regents only. Other Regents examinations are widely administered to individual students after a student by student discussion has taken place involving staff and administration. Students may graduate with a local or a Regents diploma.