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International High School at LaGuardia Community College

Grades: 9-12
Staff Pick
45-35 Van Dam Street
Long Island City NY 11101
Phone: 718-392-3433

Our Insights

What’s Special

National model for teaching immigrants English while preparing them for college

The Downside

Math not as strong as humanities

Immigrants from around the world learn English while taking challenging academic classes at the International High School at LaGuardia Community College. All students take college courses and many earn a two-year-college degree in addition to their high school diploma.

Founded in 1985, the school was the first to adopt practices now shared by the Internationals Network for Public Schools, an organization of 28 schools in six states and Washington, D.C. Classes are taught in English and students who speak very little English are paired with more advanced students who speak their native language.

The school has the friendly and welcoming tone of a close-knit community. Students, who come from 51 countries and speak 38 different languages, may take part in theater, music, and dance groups that showcase their native cultures and explore the immigrant experience. During the school's Food Festival, students and teachers bring food from their native countries to share.

Classes last for 70 minutes, instead of the typical 42. Students work in small groups on projects and make presentations of their work each year. Teachers circulate around the classroom from one group to another, rather than lecturing in the front of the room. All teachers are trained in English as a Second Language and are also certified in their subject area; many teachers are multilingual and can provide translations in several different languages.

Each student has the same advisor and the same team of teachers for two years. Students meet with their advisors once a week. Working with the same students for two consecutive years allows the faculty to get to know the students well.

Most high schools require students to take five Regents exams to graduate, but at the International High School, students only take the English Regents exam. In addition, they must present a portfolio of their work to a panel of teachers, staff, and peers. The portfolio includes a research paper, a literary essay, a science project, a math project, a creative piece, a native language project and a written self-evaluation. Over the years, the school has been stronger in the humanities than in math but teachers are working to strengthen math, staff members said.

Students may take part in sports teams with two other schools, Robert F. Wagner and Middle College High School. Eleventh- and 12th-graders have internships at government agencies, businesses, schools, hospitals, and community-based organizations.

Students take courses ranging from biology to drawing at LaGuardia Community College, and some are offered in their native languages. More than half of all students stay at International for its fifth-year program, in which they take only college classes and may earn an Associate's Degree.

International has a well-staffed college office. Most graduates continue their education, either at CUNY or at private colleges.

ADMISSIONS: International is open to students who have lived in the United States for fewer than four years. (Pauline Zaldonis, 2012, updated via web reports, August 2018)

Read more

School Stats

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

Is this school safe and well-run?

From 2019-20 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

From 2019-20 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 2019-20 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 2019-20 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 2020-21 Demographic Snapshot

Free or reduced priced lunch
Students with disabilities
English language learners

From 2019-20 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 2019-20 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 2021 High School Directory

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

Students work on projects in all classes that align to our graduation portfolio rubrics. In all classes, students learn English and build research, writing, and presentation skills through their project work. All students complete a native language project each year as well, to strengthen their native language skills. Classes are small, usually 25 students, and students work together in groups in each class.


Language Courses

Albanian, American Sign Language, Arabic, Bengali, French, Greek, Hindi, Italian, Korean, Latin, Mandarin, Polish, Portuguese, Punjabi, 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 NYCDOE’s MySchools
NYC Department of Education: MySchools

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


Jaclyn Valane
Parent Coordinator
Harry Schutz

Other Details

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

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