Middle College High School at LaGuardia Community College

Grades 9-12
Staff Pick
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What’s Special

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

The Downside

The relaxed atmosphere isn't for everyone.

Our Review

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)

About the students

Enrollment
507
Asian
8.9%
Black
4.1%
Hispanic
78.5%
White
7.7%
Other
0.8%
Free or reduced priced lunch
100%
Students with disabilities
15%
English language learners
1%
Male
53%

About the school

Shared campus?
Yes
This school shares the Middle College Campus with one other school
Uniforms required?
No
Metal detectors?
No
How crowded? (Full is 100%)
144%
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Attendance

Average daily attendance
93%
85% Citywide Average
How many students are chronically absent?
20%
42% Citywide Average

Is this school safe?

How many teachers say order and discipline are maintained at this school?
96%
77% Citywide Average
How many students think bullying happens most or all of the time at this school?
20%
37% Citywide Average
How many students say they feel safe in the hallways, bathrooms and locker rooms?
92%
85% Citywide Average
How many students say most students treat each other with respect?
81%
57% Citywide Average

About the leadership

Years of principal experience at this school
8.8
5.3 Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
96%
80% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal has a clear vision for this school?
84%
85% Citywide Average
How many teachers trust the principal?
96%
80% Citywide Average

About the teachers

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
100%
73% Citywide Average
Teacher attendance
96%
97% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
96%
81% Citywide Average
How many teachers think the staff collaborate to make this school run effectively?
92%
86% Citywide Average
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the citywide average

Arts offerings

This school has 3 dedicated spaces for Music, Visual arts, and Media arts
This school has 2 licensed arts teacher in Music and Theater

Engaging curriculum?

How many students say this school offers enough programs, classes and activities to keep them interested?
73%
72% Citywide Average
How many students say they are challenged in most or all of their classes?
62%
54% Citywide Average
How many students say the programs, classes and activities here encourage them to develop talent outside academics?
76%
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?
82%
77% Citywide Average
How many graduates earn Advanced Regents diplomas?
0%
11% Citywide Average
How many students drop out?
10%
10% Citywide Average

Are students prepared for college?

How many students graduate with test scores high enough to enroll at CUNY without remedial help?
49%
32% Citywide Average
How many students take a college-level course or earn a professional certificate?
87%
41% Citywide Average
How many graduate and enter college within 18 months?
73%
63% Citywide Average
Citywide Average Key
This school is Better Near Worse than the 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?
82%
68% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school offers enough activities and services for their children's needs?
100%
87% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say this school works to achive the goals of their students' IEPs?
97%
91% Citywide Average
How many parents of students with disabilities say they are satisfied with the IEP development process at this school?
98%
90% Citywide Average
How many special ed students graduate in 4 years?
68%
60% Citywide Average
For more information about our data sources, see About Our Data

Programs and Admissions

Middle College High School at LaGuardia Community College
Admissions Method: Screened
Program Description

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

Academics

Language Courses

American Sign Language, French, Italian, Spanish

Sports

Boys PSAL teams

Baseball, Basketball, Soccer, Volleyball, Wrestling

Girls PSAL teams

Basketball, Golf, Soccer, Softball, Tennis, Volleyball

Coed PSAL teams

Golf

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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Location

45-35 Van Dam Street
Long Island City NY 11101
Sunnyside (District 24)
Trains: 7 to 33rd St; E, M, R to Queens Plaza
Buses: B24, B62, Q100, Q101, Q102, Q32, Q39, Q60, Q67, Q69

Contact

Phone
718-392-3330
Principal
Linda Siegmund
Parent Coordinator
Zoraida Cardona

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