Cities Journal

15 Best High Schools In New York

U.N. International School
Photo credit: Fraser Mummery / Flickr

11. U.N. International School

The Washington Post’s annual list of America’s Most Challenging High Schools includes the U.N. International School, ranked 76 in the U.S. in 2014. With only 9% of U.S. high schools making it on the Washington Post list, the Post bases its statistical analysis of U.S. High Schools on the number of Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate and Advanced International Certificate of Education tests given in the individual school, divided by the number of graduates of that school.

The Index provides a list of the most challenging schools in America, with the top 220 schools being among the highest 1% of the most challenging high schools in the United States. (Magnet or charter high schools are not included on the Washington Post list).

The Baccalaureate School for Global Education in Queens, NY, Brooklyn Latin, and Townsend Harris, also of Queens, were other schools among the highest 1% of the most challenging schools in America.

The U.N. International School is located in Manhattan’s Lower East Side on the FDR Drive, just south of the Queens Midtown Tunnel, overlooking the East River.

One of the strong points of the U.N. International High School is its emphasis on developing an international perspective, and among its close to 1,500 students are representatives from over 120 countries, and a staff with over 60 different nationalities, state the schools information pages. U.N. International states that it encourages students to “think critically”, to develop an “international perspective”, and to develop an “understanding of global issues”.

Each student is assigned a mentor who will monitor various aspects of the student’s progress during the student’s four years of high school. U.N. International is an independent private school that was founded in 1947 and that is affiliated with the United Nations.

Originally formed by United Nations parents, the school gradually broadened the diversity of its student body to include the non-governmental international sector, as well as including local New York City families. The average SAT score of U.N. International School high school students was 1,787.

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