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International High School at Union Square

Grades: 9-12
40 Irving Place
Manhattan NY 10003
Phone: 212-533-2560
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Our Insights

What’s Special

Prime location for newcomers who explore NYC

The Downside

Shared building with metal detectors

The International High School at Union Square opened in 2010 and offers a prime location for new immigrant students who come from 30 different countries.

Classes are small, with the largest one having only 22 students. Students of different language groups are placed in the same class and learn English from one another with lots of class discussions and group projects.

Many different languages and nationalities are represented. About 40 percent speak Spanish, 25 percent speak Chinese, 10 percent are from French-speaking countries in West Africa, 10 percent speak Bengali and 5 percent speak Arabic. There are also a few students from Italy, Nepal and Korea, said Assistant Principal Brian Knudsen. The school has a good attendance rate; students say they feel safe and the teachers inspire them to learn, according to the Learning Environment Survey.

The school is one of a handful of small schools housed in the Washington Irving High School building, a large neighborhood school which is closing after years of poor performance. Students must pass through metal detectors to enter the building, but administrators greet them at the door to make them feel safe and welcome. Students may take part in building-wide sports teams.

International students take lots of trips around the city to introduce them to their new country and to encourage them to learn by doing. Daniel Walsh became principal in 2014 after founding principal Gaylea Prichard-Silvers left.

Admissions: The school is open to city residents who have lived in the U.S. for less than four years, whose native language is not English, and who score in the intermediate, beginner, or below-level rank on a standardized language test, the NYSESLAT. (Clara Hemphill, 2012; updated Pamela Wheaton, phone interview December 2014)


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School Stats

Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Is this school safe and well-run?

From 2018-19 NYC School Survey

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained at this school?
75% Citywide Average
How many students say they feel safe in the hallways, bathrooms and locker rooms?
86% Citywide Average
How many students think bullying happens most or all of the time at this school?
37% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
79% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
80% Citywide Average

From 2017-18 NY State Report Card

How many students were suspended?
2% Citywide Average

From this school's most recent Quality Review Report

Are teachers effective?

From 2018-19 School Quality Guide

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
76% Citywide Average
Years of principal experience at this school

How do students perform academically?

From 2018-19 School Quality Guide

How many students graduate in 4 years?
82% Citywide Average
How many students graduate with test scores high enough to enroll at CUNY without remedial help?
48% Citywide Average
How many students take a college-level course or earn a professional certificate?
41% Citywide Average
How many graduates stay enrolled in college for at least 3 semesters?
67% Citywide Average

Who does this school serve?

From 2018-19 Demographic Snapshot

Free or reduced priced lunch
Students with disabilities
English language learners

From 2018-19 School Quality Guide

Average daily attendance
87% Citywide Average
How many students miss 18 or more days of school?
38% Citywide Average

How does this school serve special populations?

From 2018-19 School Quality Guide

How many English language learners graduate in 4 years?
68% Citywide Average

For more information about our data sources, see About Our Data · More DOE statistics for this school

Programs & Admissions

From the 2020 High School Directory

International High School at Union Square
Admissions Method: Screened: Language
Program Description:

We are a small school with immigrant students who come from over 45 different countries and speak over 25 different languages. Our school fosters a supportive and collaborative learning environment, and our staff speak different languages including Spanish, Mandarin, Arabic, French, Portuguese, and Haitian Creole. We offer English classes, internships, CUNY College Now Classes, Mentoring, small advisory groups, college exploration, and extensive social work services.


Language Courses


Advanced Placement (AP) courses

AP Spanish Language and Culture


Boys PSAL teams

Baseball, Basketball, Handball, Soccer, Volleyball

Girls PSAL teams

Basketball, Softball, Volleyball

Read about admissions, academics, and more at this school on NYCDOE’s MySchools
NYC Department of Education: MySchools

Contact & Location


Gramercy (District 2)
Trains: 4 Line, 5 Line, 6 Line, L Line, N Line, Q Line, R Line, W Line to 14th St-Union Square
Buses: BM1, BM2, BM3, BM4, BxM10, BxM6, BxM7, BxM8, BxM9, M1, M101, M102, M103, M14A, M14D, M15, M15-SBS, M2, M23-SBS, M3, M34-SBS, M34A-SBS, M55, M8, M9, QM21, X1, X10, X10B, X12, X14, X17, X2, X27, X28, X37, X38, X42, X5, X63, X64, X68, X7, X9


Vadewatie Ramsuchit
Parent Coordinator
Indira Breton Peguero

Other Details

Shared campus?
This school shares the Washington Irving Educational Campus with five other schools
Metal detectors?

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