What it is

Every fall, the Department of Education hosts a big high school fair at Brooklyn Technical High School. It’s as busy as Trader Joe’s before a hurricane, with lines of people snaking around the block to get in. Most schools will have a table staffed by students, staff and sometimes the principal. The nine sought-after specialized high schools are set up in the first floor gymnasium, and it’s always jam-packed.

Get ready

Read our school reviews and check out our videos. Make a list of "must see" schools and go to those tables first. Our "School Stats" will give you a sense of a school's safety and vibe, how well it prepares kids for college, and the graduation rate.

What to bring

Take along a notebook, pen, snack and water. Tear out pages from the high school directory of schools that interest you if you want to travel light. Wear sneakers or comfortable shoes.

Ask questions

Ask about homework, your chances of getting in, and if they have Advanced Placement and honors classes. Ask about sports, uniforms, lockers, and whether or not you can go out for lunch. Do they offer four years of math and science? Where have graduates gone to college? How many staff members help students with college applications?


Register (neatly!) on school sign-in sheets to show your interest in “limited unscreened” schools. Add your student ID number to make doubly sure your name is clear.

A tip

Take public transportation. Parking is horrendous.