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Middle College High School at LaGuardia Community College

Grades: 9-12
Staff Pick
45-35 Van Dam Street
Long Island City NY 11101
Phone: 718-392-3330
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Our Insights

What’s Special

Lots of individual attention for kids who don't fit the mold.

The Downside

The relaxed atmosphere isn't for everyone.

Middle College High School offers an independent but supportive learning environment that allows students who might have struggled in a traditional high school to flourish. At Middle College, all students take college courses for free at LaGuardia Community College, and some graduate with as many as two years worth of college credit or an Associates Degree.

Located in Long Island City, directly across the street from the LaGuardia Community College campus, Middle College enables its students to take college classes, use the colleges facilities, and blend in with college students. The newly renovated building is bright and clean with student work on display; and although the atmosphere is relaxed, expectations are high. Students may wear hats in class and call their teachers by their first names. Classes are small with students sitting around tables rather than in rows, and many last for 70 minutes, rather than the typical 42, to allow students to more thoroughly digest the material. There is no bell system to signal period changes, and during transitions students seemed happy to take a minute to chat with their teachers and friends. While the relaxed atmosphere contributes to the school's collegial tone, the independence granted to students may prove challenging for some students accustomed to a stricter environment.

Principal Linda Siegmund, who was an assistant principal at the school until 2007, describes the schools culture as warm, caring, and committed to helping its students succeed. Its an environment where students can develop trusting relationships with their teachers and with authority figures, she said. A high level of respect between students and teachers is reflected in the Learning Environment Survey, and most students report feeling inspired to learn. Kids here bond with their teachers, said Siegmund.

Classes often include group projects and discussions. Some classes use the Socratic seminar model for class discussions to prepare students for the college seminar environment. In an English class, students discussed The Catcher in the Rye. In a science class, students worked in small groups to learn about forensics by collecting fingerprints. Classes in the 9thand 10thgrades focus on developing students skills in preparation for when they begin taking more college classes in the 11thand 12thgrades. Students taking college classes receive ample support from Middle College, including a mandatory seminar where they can discuss their college experiences.

Unlike most high schools, which require their students to take five Regents exams to graduate, Middle College requires its students to take only the English and Math Regents. In addition to taking the two Regents exams, students present a comprehensive portfolio of work to demonstrate their understanding of their coursework.

Extracurricular activities include yearbook, theater, peer counseling, and conflict resolution. Middle College shares a gym and cafeteria with the International High School at LaGuardia Community College. The two schools alsoparticipate in shared sports teams along with Robert F. Wagner Jr. Secondary School. Students interested in getting hands-on work experience may participate in an internship program.

Special education: Middle College also has a program for hearing-impaired students, which offers classes taught in American Sign Language, a well-staffed resource room, and other enrichment services. Sign language interpreters are present in many classrooms, and ASL is the only foreign language offered at Middle College. The school also has integrative co-teaching (ICT) classes, where two teachers work with a group of special and general education students.

College admissions: All students at Middle College take free college courses at LaGuardia Community College, and some graduate with as many as two years worth of college credit. Many students also stay on at Middle College for a fifth year to take more college classes and to earn their Associates Degree. The majority of graduates continue on to two or four year colleges. Most students in the program for the hearing impaired attend Rochester Institutes National Technical Institute for the Deaf.

Admissions: Priority is given first to students from Districts 24 and 30 and then to students from other districts in Queens. Admissions are screened, and the administration generally looks for students with low standardized test scores and low GPAs. (Pauline Zaldonis, January 2013)

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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 2017-18 NYC School Survey

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained at this school?
77% Citywide Average
How many students say they feel safe in the hallways, bathrooms and locker rooms?
85% Citywide Average
How many students think bullying happens most or all of the time at this school?
36% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
80% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
81% Citywide Average

From this school's most recent Quality Review Report

Are teachers effective?

From 2016-17 School Quality Guide

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
74% Citywide Average
Years of principal experience at this school

How do students perform academically?

From 2016-17 School Quality Guide

How many students graduate in 4 years?
77% Citywide Average
How many students graduate with test scores high enough to enroll at CUNY without remedial help?
37% Citywide Average
How many students take a college-level course or earn a professional certificate?
38% Citywide Average
How many graduates stay enrolled in college for at least 3 semesters?
64% Citywide Average

From 2017 NY State Graduation Outcomes

How many graduates earn Advanced Regents diplomas?
13% Citywide Average

Who does this school serve?

From 2017-18 Demographic Snapshot

Free or reduced priced lunch
Students with disabilities
English language learners

From 2016-17 School Quality Guide

Average daily attendance
87% Citywide Average
How many students miss 18 or more days of school?
37% Citywide Average

How does this school serve special populations?

From 2016-17 School Quality Guide

How many students with disabilities graduate in 4 years?
59% Citywide Average

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

Programs & Admissions

Middle College High School at LaGuardia Community College
Admissions Method: Screened
  • Attendance
  • Punctuality
  • Course Grades: English (67-100), Math (65-100), Science (65-100), Social Studies (67-100)
  • Standardized Test Scores: English Language Arts (2.0-4.5), Math (1.9-4.5)
Program Description:

Portfolio-based assessment, five year early college program and out-of-school internships.


Language Courses

American Sign Language, French, Italian, Spanish


Boys PSAL teams

Baseball, Basketball, Soccer, Volleyball, Wrestling

Girls PSAL teams

Basketball, Golf, Soccer, Softball, Tennis, Volleyball

Coed PSAL teams


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

Contact & Location


Sunnyside (District 24)
Trains: 7 Line to 33rd St-Rawson St; E Line, M Line, R Line to Queens Plaza
Buses: B24, B62, Q100, Q101, Q102, Q32, Q39, Q60, Q67


Socrates Ortiz
Parent Coordinator

Other Details

Shared campus?
This school shares the Middle College Campus with one other school
Metal detectors?

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