Academics: It's a good place if you're driven to succeed academically, but it also encourages you to take on extra curricular activities/arts programs. AP classes are a hit or mess - I've had outstanding AP teachers that helped me get 4's and 5's on the test, but I've also had some that just didn't know how to make the content understandable for students.
Culture: Like many high schools, students tend to be in their own hubs based on culture or activities (sports, ASB, arts, etc.). Projects like benchbuilding helped unite groups, but not for an extended amount of time. For the most part, the students are pretty nice and inclusive.
Sports: Sports teams aren't bad (or at least when I attended); coaches are great and supportive.
Overall: Decent school that fosters a variety of students; not as "intense" as some other schools in the Bay but will allow for motivated students to shine.
My son is a freshman this year. I had high hopes for this school but have been disappointed. The school is over-enrolled which I think truly stresses out teachers and give administrators an excuse to not do a very good job. The admin policy is to say "no" to everything and then rely on parents to push and come up w solutions to problems. Our counselor is particularly bad and completely unresponsive. I feel that since my kid is doing well (A/B in honors) that he is just ignored and no teacher or admin have even attempted to pay any attention to him. 2 of my son's 5 teachers are new to teaching and seem completely overwhelmed and unhappy. Another is so bad that I have had to ask for my son never to have him again ( told admin this and they never even cared to ask me WHY I felt this way). Admin are very disorganised and communication is terrible. Parent involvement (unless it is to lobby for a higher grade) is minimal. Classes are so full that the ability to get electives is non-existant. Facilities are ancient and crowded.
I went to Irvington for my freshman year. Due to my mom's new job, I had to move to San Francisco. However, if I didn't move, I would've been happy to graduate from Irvington I applied to Irvington through the arts magnet program and when I got in. i was so happy. I was a really shy person. I didn't talk, I didn't make friends. But since it's an art magnet school, a lot of the people in the school are performers. And can I just say, theatre kids are super welcoming and outgoing and friendly. They were persistent enough to talk to the quiet nerdy girl who wore black every day. .As for teachers, I loved all of them. I am not a PE person, but my PE teacher was great. She was sweet, and nice considering how bad I was. My math teacher was so understanding and very underrated by students. But really, the thing I would like to say about Irvington: I loved it there. If I could go back, I would. Also, there is so much talent there. If you have a talented child who is interested in art in Fremont, send them there. The arts teachers are wonderful, the productions have amazing sets and talents, and the teachers are wonderful. I reccomend it fully.
Teachers are making easy subjects difficult by giving tough tests. They want to prove that they are very good at their subject. Even a good student who can get grade A in other schools, end up getting C in this school, ex Algebra 2 Hons and AP bio. This ruins the GPA of a even a very intelligent student. No start for this school.
My daughter graduated from Irvington in 2013. She was first admitted on a fine arts wavier as a freshman. From the first time she visited the campus, she knew this was where she wanted to be. We actually bought a home here so our son could attend in this area as well. Although she was on a 504 plan for dyslexia and ADD, she thrived here. Each year we met with counselors and vice-principal to plan for her success. She passed the CAHSEE on the first try, she graduated with a good GPA and sufficient AST scores which earned her entry many of the Cal State Universities. She was active in the drama and vocal music departments. She was able to take classes such as sign language and advanced drama. Most importantly, she was happy here. Hats off to the staff at Irvington from one very thankful mom!
It is a horrible experience for us to move our children to this school, wish never make such a big mistake. The school culture lack of harmony, its communication channels are not organized efficiently. Some staff come in just for the job, no passion to teach at all.
Teachers are making easy subjects difficult by giving tough tests. They want to prove that they are very good at their subject. Even a good student who can get grade A in other schools, end up getting C in this school, ex Algebra 2 Hons and AP bio. This ruins the GPA of a even a very intelligent student.
Irvington HS must be doing something right....the attendance area home desirability is way up as families strive to move into a highly rated educational situation. The music program remains exceptional...both Horner and Irvington continue to turn out top notch musicians/groups and receive high awards.
i agree with another commentor: it's really hard to learn anything as the "teachers" do little. even i could teach better than some teachers here can. also, there is NO SCHOOL UNITY. all the asians, blacks, hispanics, and white people are all separated. there is no leadership at all, like the school presidents dont do anything....