George Washington High School closed in 1999 and four small schools opened in the building.
Though the building is old, it is well-maintained. The entrance hall of the 1923 building has striking black and white floor tiles, a Tiffany-style chandelier, and polished brass handrails on a curving staircase. The schools in the building share the auditorium, cafeteria, two swimming pools and state-of-the-art track and athletic fields.
The College Academy offers students a chance to create their own mock business. The school has above average attendance and a graduation rate that is slightly above the citywide average, even though more than one-third of the students are new immigrants and most students enter 9th grade with reading skills that are well below grade level.
The High School for Media and Communications has a higher-than average graduation rate and a stable staff focused on preparing students for college. The administration tackles the school's safety problems with intensive security measures, including a beefed up safety officer presence and periodic sweeps of all hallways and stairwells. The schools physical education program includes swimming, fencing, salsa, weight training and bike riding.
The High School for Law and Public Service strives for excellence through a challenging, innovative, student-centered curriculum where students develop analytical skills to become critical, independent thinkers and lifelong learners. The school is fairly competitive, with 1840 students applying for 180 spots in 2011.
High School for Health Careers and Sciences boasts an intimate and respectful school environment. Selected students participate in health-related internships at New-York Presbyterian Hospital where students shadow doctors and witness surgeries. The school offers a variety of services for new immigrants learning English.
Security officers patrol the hallways and students pass through metal detectors to enter the building. Students at Health Careers say they feel safe, according to the Learning Environment Survey. However, at the High School for Media and Communications, about a quarter of students said they sometimes stayed home because they didn't feel safe at school, and about the same percentage of parents said they didn't feel that their child was safe at school. (Aryn Bloodworth, December 2012)
Contact & Location
549 Audubon Avenue
Manhattan NY 10040
Trains: to 191st St; to 190th St
Buses: M3, M4, M98, M101