Sunset Park High School

Grades 9-12
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What’s Special

Small school feel in bright new building

The Downside

No Regents chemistry or physics

Our Review

Sunset Park High School, housed in a bright new building, has the feel of a small school, even though it serves more than 1,300 students. The students are divided into three learning communities where students takes classes together for the first three years so teachers can get to know them well.

Sunset Park is committed to teaching students of all abilities in the same classes. Students with special needs as well as those learning English are integrated into regular college-prep classes, many of which have two teachers.

Principal Vicki Antonini acknowledges its challenging for teachers to reach children with different academic preparation in the same class, but she says the benefits are undeniable. Unlike many schools where weaker students only take three years of math and science, everyone at Sunset Park takes four years of math (including pre-calculus) and science (including classes such as forensics and environmental science). The schools graduation rate for students receiving special education services is far above the citywide average.

Antonini says the combination of extra time spent on each subject and extra teachers in the classroom helps everyone achieve. For example, all freshman take three hours of algebra, one hour of applied algebra, and three hours of statistics each week. On our visit, we saw a pre-calculus classa required course for seniorswith three teachers. Students worked at their own pace, using a combination of face-to-face instruction and online learning at computers.

A downside: There are not a lot of high-level courses. The school doesnt offer Regents-level physics or chemistry. The school's only Advanced Placement offering, Spanish, meets at "zero period" before the school day starts. However, students may take College Now classes on Saturdays through Brooklyn College.

Teachers use projects to spark students curiosity. For example, the environmental science teacher uses a "citizen science" approach focused on how students can use science to affect their community and daily lives, like an analysis of the ongoing oyster bed restoration project in Bay Ridge.

Advisory classes are co-led with staff from the Center for Family Life, the school's founding community partner, as well as 11th-graders enrolled in an advisory leadership elective. The goal of advisory, besides academic reflection and goal setting, is social-emotional development and building a safe, supportive environment throughout the school and community. We observed one technology-themed advisory that was preparing to teach lessons to a 6th-grade class at nearby MS 136 about the small robots they had built and the "trash basketball" hoops they had printed on Sunset Park's 3-D printers.

Student representatives of each grade on the Leadership Team run monthly activities like a Poetry Slam, Spirit Week or Cultural Day to engage students and build community.

The school offers a robust after-school program, including PSAL sports such as baseball, soccer, volleyball, badminton and one of the first girls wrestling teams in the city. In addition, teachers and students co-lead tutoring and clubs like yoga, movies, cooking, woodworking and Bollywood dancing. The students meet up for these activities in the welcoming, comfortable cafeteria, where they can get a hot meal after school before splitting off with their clubs. Dozens of Center for Family Life staff, counselors, teachers and students happily stay at school until 6 pm.

Family involvement is a high priority, and PTA meetings are tied to school events like College Nights, workshops on immigration and Multicultural Night. At Sunset Park, students lead their own teacher conferences and convey their strengths, weaknesses and goals for improvement to their parents along with their advisors.

Most graduates attend CUNYs or SUNYs, and have come back to tell their teachers they were well-prepared to write research papers and to meet deadlines, school leaders said.

SPECIAL EDUCATION:Sunset Park is modeled on the Queens High School of Teaching, Liberal Arts and the Sciences, which has successfully integrated students with special needs into general education classes, many of which have two teachers.Sunset Park has adopted the same approach for its many new immigrant students from Mexico and Central America, Yemen and China. Rather than segregating children into classes of English as a second language, Sunset Park newcomers share a class with students who are fluent in English and receive assistance from an ESL teacher.

ADMISSIONS:Priority goes to Districts 15 and 20 students, and then to Brooklyn students, who attend an information session. (Nicole Mader, April 2015)

About the students

Free or reduced priced lunch
Students with disabilities
English language learners

About the school

Shared campus?
This school is in its own building.
Uniforms required?
Metal detectors?
How crowded? (Full is 100%)
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average


Average daily attendance
87% Citywide Average
How many students are chronically absent?
37% Citywide Average

Is this school safe?

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained at this school?
77% Citywide Average
How many students think bullying happens most or all of the time at this school?
37% Citywide Average
How many students say they feel safe in the hallways, bathrooms and locker rooms?
85% Citywide Average
How many students say most students treat each other with respect?
57% Citywide Average

About the leadership

Years of principal experience at this school
5.8 Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
80% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal has a clear vision for this school?
85% Citywide Average
How many teachers trust the principal?
80% Citywide Average

About the teachers

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
74% Citywide Average
Teacher attendance
97% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
81% Citywide Average
How many teachers think the staff collaborate to make this school run effectively?
86% Citywide Average
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Arts offerings

This school has 5 dedicated spaces for Dance, Music, and Visual arts
This school has 6 licensed arts teacher in Dance, Music, and Theater

Engaging curriculum?

How many students say this school offers enough programs, classes and activities to keep them interested?
72% Citywide Average
How many students say they are challenged in most or all of their classes?
54% Citywide Average
How many students say the programs, classes and activities here encourage them to develop talent outside academics?
71% Citywide Average
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

How many graduate?

How many students graduate in 4 years?
77% Citywide Average
How many graduates earn Advanced Regents diplomas?
11% Citywide Average
How many students drop out?
10% Citywide Average

Are students prepared for college?

How many students graduate with test scores high enough to enroll at CUNY without remedial help?
36% Citywide Average
How many students take a college-level course or earn a professional certificate?
37% Citywide Average
How many graduate and enter college within 18 months?
60% Citywide Average
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

How does this school serve English Language Learners?

How many English language learners graduate in 4 years?
66% Citywide Average

How does this school serve students with disabilities?

This school offers self-contained classes
This school offers team teaching (ICT)
How many students say that students with disabilities are included in all activities?
68% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school offers enough activities and services for their children's needs?
87% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school works to achive the goals of their students' IEPs?
91% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say they are satisfied with the IEP development process at this school?
90% Citywide Average
How many special ed students graduate in 4 years?
59% Citywide Average
For more information about our data sources, see About Our Data

Programs and Admissions

Sunset Park High School
Admissions Method: Limited Unscreened
Program Description

Through our partnership with the Institute for Student Achievement, we are a college-preparatory school. Part of our mission is to ensure all students graduate within four years having choices in post-secondary educational options that best match their short and long term career goals. We are unwavering in accomplishing this in an inclusive environment undergirded by our core values of equity, community and collaboration. Learner-led, inquiry learning is the way we see all students grow.


Language Courses

French, Italian, Spanish

Advanced Placement (AP) courses

AP Biology, AP Computer Science, AP English Language and Composition, AP Spanish


Boys PSAL teams

Badminton, Baseball, Basketball, Handball, Soccer, Wrestling

Girls PSAL teams

Basketball, Soccer, Softball, Volleyball, Wrestling

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

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153 35th Street
Brooklyn NY 11232
Sunset Park (District 15)
Trains: D, N, R to 36th St-4 Ave
Buses: B35, B37, B63, B70, X12, X14, X17, X17A, X19, X3, X42, X5, X9


Victoria Antonini
Parent Coordinator
Lizette Lugo