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Staten Island Technical High School

Grades: 9-12
Staff Pick
485 Clawson Street
Staten Island NY 10306
Phone: 718-667-3222
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Our Insights

What’s Special

Rigorous academics; strong engineering program; students learn Russian; full-time comfort dog

The Downside

Not all students may want to learn Russian

Staten Island Technical High School (SI Tech) combines the rigor and activities of a big specialized high school with the friendly atmosphere of a neighborhood school. It's a welcoming place for high achievers of all stripes: independent go-getters, kids who like to tinker, and even creative and artsy types. Students tackle college-level work as early as 9th grade, and many graduate with anywhere from 16 to 60 college credits thanks to the school’s extensive range of Advanced Placement (AP) classes and partnerships with universities.

In keeping with the school's name, all students take introductory courses in robotics, research and technical writing, electronics and TV/movie production—the latter taught in a recording studio equipped with professional-grade technology. Students also study CAD (computer-aided design) and have the opportunity to earn industry certification in AutoCAD software, as well as take a course in career and financial management. Upper-grade options include advanced courses in electronics, computer science and TV/movie production. An engineering research program prepares students for science competitions.

All students use laptops or tablet devices in classes throughout the day. Most bring their own device, and for those who can’t afford one, the school provides each with an electronic tablet to use.

Despite the school's emphasis on engineering and technology, the arts have a strong presence, something principal Mark Erlenwein, an SI Tech alumnus (class of 1992), believes is important for a well-rounded high school experience. Roughly one-third of students participate in one of the school's nine bands, and many students perform in school concerts. Drama classes are taught in the school's black box theater; SING! is a popular annual event.

Work-based learning is big at SI Tech. Nearly half of the students are placed in paid internships during the school year or summer. “Many of our students have to declare a college major early because they arrive with a year or two worth of credits,” said Erlenwein. “The internships help them figure out what they want to do before they even start college.”

There's a generous range of AP courses in all subjects, including two levels each of calculus (AB and BC) and physics (B and C). All students take AP World history and United States history. Additional college courses for credit are offered both on- and off-site through partnerships with the College of Saint Rose, College of Staten Island and Kingsborough Community College.

The school's Russian language program is impressive and designed in partnership with the Pushkin State Russian Language Institute in Moscow. All students study Russian for three years and sit for the Advanced Placement exam at the end of 11th grade. Seniors may take a fourth year of Russian and earn college credit for the course through a partnership with SUNY Albany.

SI Tech is not a pressure cooker, but students still feel the weight of challenging work and the desire to achieve. To ratchet down the pressure, the school switched to a letter grading system, which deemphasizes incremental changes in grades, such as the difference between a 93 and a 96 (both are considered an “A”). Erlenwein credits the switch with improving students’ quality of life. “In the past, students would get upset if they got a grade of 89. Now they get an 'A,' which seems a lot better and puts it in perspective.”

To help keep tabs on students’ social and emotional needs, the school has boosted its guidance efforts. All guidance counselors and deans are concentrated in one wing of a floor, to create more of a center—a safe place where students can find lots of people on hand to provide support. The newest addition to the staff is Sheldon, the school’s full-time comfort dog. A student having a rough day may be given a pass to spend some time with Sheldon in either the principal's or guidance counselor’s office.

A rarity in high school, students have gym class daily, which Erlenwein says is important to help them manage stress and stay healthy.

Beyond classes, students have plenty to keep them engaged. There are roughly 100 clubs in addition to the school-year and summer internships. SI Tech and McKee High School have a joint PSAL sports program with more than 40 teams.

Virtually all graduates go on to four-year colleges. In addition to CUNY and SUNY schools, graduates attend competitive public and private colleges and universities, including all of the Ivy League schools.

SPECIAL EDUCATION: There are few students with special needs requiring services under an IEP (individualized education program), but many more needing accommodations and other supports that are overseen by the guidance staff.

ADMISSIONS: Admission is based on the SHSAT (specialized high schools admissions test) given in the fall. An open house is held in October. About half of SI Tech students live on Staten Island, and most of the rest travel from Brooklyn. The school actively recruits students early on as part of a borough-wide initiative to increase college attendance. The school hosts weekly events for elementary and middle school students. (Laura Zingmond, October 2014; updated via interview, July 2018)

 

 

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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?
97%
77% Citywide Average
How many students say they feel safe in the hallways, bathrooms and locker rooms?
98%
85% Citywide Average
How many students think bullying happens most or all of the time at this school?
10%
36% Citywide Average
How many teachers say the principal is an effective manager?
97%
80% Citywide Average
How many teachers say they would recommend this school to other families?
98%
81% Citywide Average

From this school's most recent Quality Review Report

Are teachers effective?

From 2017-18 School Quality Guide

How many teachers have 3 or more years of experience teaching?
90%
74% Citywide Average
Years of principal experience at this school
4.8

How do students perform academically?

From 2017-18 School Quality Guide

How many students graduate in 4 years?
100%
80% Citywide Average
How many students graduate with test scores high enough to enroll at CUNY without remedial help?
100%
44% Citywide Average
How many students take a college-level course or earn a professional certificate?
100%
39% Citywide Average
How many graduates stay enrolled in college for at least 3 semesters?
90%
66% Citywide Average

From 2017 NY State Graduation Outcomes

How many graduates earn Advanced Regents diplomas?
99%
13% Citywide Average

Who does this school serve?

From 2017-18 Demographic Snapshot

Enrollment
1320
Asian
48%
Black
1%
Hispanic
3%
White
45%
Other
3%
Free or reduced priced lunch
41%
Students with disabilities
1%
English language learners
0%

From 2017-18 School Quality Guide

Average daily attendance
96%
87% Citywide Average
How many students miss 18 or more days of school?
7%
38% Citywide Average


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

Programs & Admissions

Engineering
Admissions Method: Test
Program Description:

Admission to this Specialized High School is based solely on the score obtained on the Specialized High Schools Admission Test (SHSAT). Students should speak to their school counselors in the Fall to register for the SHSAT.

Academics

Language Courses

Russian

Advanced Placement (AP) courses

AP Biology, AP Calculus AB, AP Calculus BC, AP Chemistry, AP Computer Science, AP English Language and Composition, AP English Literature and Composition, AP Environmental Science, AP Macroeconomics, AP Physics, AP Psychology, AP Statistics, AP U.S. Government and Politics, AP U.S. History, AP World History

Sports

Boys PSAL teams

Baseball, Basketball, Bowling, Cross Country, Fencing, Football, Handball, Indoor Track, Outdoor Track, Soccer, Swimming, Table Tennis, Tennis, Volleyball, Wrestling

Girls PSAL teams

Badminton, Basketball, Bowling, Cross Country, Fencing, Golf, Handball, Indoor Track, Outdoor Track, Soccer, Softball, Swimming, Table Tennis, Tennis, Volleyball

Coed PSAL teams

Golf, Stunt

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

Contact & Location

Location

Mid-Island (District 31)
Trains: SIR to New Dorp
Buses: S57, S76, S78, S79-SBS, S86

Contact

Principal
Mark Erlenwein
Parent Coordinator
BARBARA MALENFANT

Other Details

Shared campus?
No
This school is in its own building.
Metal detectors?
No

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