This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
High Tech High5
Posted January 24, 2015
- a student
Hey! I'm a 16 year old guy, attending HTH. I switched from PLHS, to Grossmont high in 9th grade, then in 10th grade I moved to HTH, I am now a senior. As many reviews say, this school is not for everyone. At first, I wasn't feeling the school, most homework was projects, unlike papers and math problems, etc. But after a month of two, I loved it! The homework (mostly projects) are interesting unlike just piles of paper. You get a more one on one experience with the teacher. Here at HTH we use less textbooks and more real primary and secondary sources, as you well in college. HTH really prepares you for college! If you are debating between Point Loma High School, Grossmont High, or High Tech High, go with High Tech 100%.
The humanities classes are excellent. Biology is excellent. Support in getting kids into college is excellent. Art integration is good. The project-based learning and constructivist educational methods support good critical thinking and healthy collaboration skills. Use of primary sources (versus lousy district textbooks) is wonderful. The math instruction is poor. My daughter had a 4.0 and was accepted to top tier universities, but did not develop solid math skills in any of her math classes at HTHI. Language instruction is also poor. Worst of all is the draconian and uninformed drug policy. Like most schools, there is a drug problem at HTHI, as well as HTH. The administration thinks that zero tolerance expulsion and "just say no" is going to address the problem. Best-practice alternatives grounded in sound behavioral and educational theory and research have been presented to them, but they have thus far chosen to disregard. The result is ongoing drug use AND alienation of the few kids who they happen to catch, and none of the kids end up getting the support and guidance that a conscientious school community could provide.
Warning! If you are a Conservative and/or Christian, you WILL get highly offend when going to this school. Usually bias is out of education, not at High Tech High. Liberal Agendas run from, income equality (they want it equal) in Math, if God exists (they say not) in Physics, and in Humanities, how horrible the church was in the time of discovering America, not to mention, in my case my teacher made an offensive joke about the church. If you don't want propaganda infused in your education STAY AWAY from High Tech High.
high tech high is probably one of the worst school i ve ever expirienced in my life, the school is set up to seem abstract and progressive to visitors but the classes and content are very seirously lacking. the way that teachers and staff treat students is subjective, if they like you then the teachers are good but if they dont, they make it their personal mission to make your high school expireince a living hell. stay FAR away from high tech high
This school has been incredible for my son. The teachers go beyond mere academics and get to know their students as people. The students all have an advisor for 4 years and develop a strong bond. If I had to name one weak area it would be math but having had other children attend different schools Math seems to be a problem everywhere. My son is not afraid to speak to his teachers, knows when to ask for help, is able to work with people of all sorts of backgrounds and is curious and interested in the world around him. The college advisor is beyond great and all the kids are helped to get into a college that is the right fit for them. In an earlier review it was stated that sometimes the students have to take remedial classes when they get to college, again I have experienced that with my kids that attended other schools as well. That is a common problem that all the colleges talk about when discussing their incoming students. The fact is my son is happy to go to school, has met amazing students and teachers. I absolutely love this school and the way they teach. The teachers at HTH are excited to teach and their students go deep instead of just checking of state standards.
This school is not for everyone. Many of the negative reviews on this site are comming from parents who chose the wrong kind of school for their kid. High Tech High puts the learning into the hands of the student- it's a collaberation between the students and the teachers. Your student will get as much out of the education that he or she puts in. I have attended this school throughout High School and it's flexible curriculum and focus on following your own interests has allowed me to focus on research at UCSD, intern at a web develepment firm, and intern with Quallcomm Labs.
The HTH system is compiled of teachers who teach nothing and assign enormous amounts of completely meaningless work despite promises of a low homework load at orientations. You will most likely find yourself learning next to nothing in a sub-standard curriculum and having to take basic courses in college to make up for it. The "less structured approach" somehow also includes no choice in classes and a rigid dress code. I urge you not to even attempt sending your child to this school because if they do switch out after you find these shortcomings they will find themselves hopelessly behind the level they should be at due to the lack of history, science, language and possibly math received from HTH.
Our first student has now graduated from HTHI and is experiencing success at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. With acceptance letters from both public and private colleges across the country, she ultimately decided to stay close to home in CA. That said, she is a very astute, self-motivated and competitive student. She was able to navigate the many challenges (organizationally and socially) at HTHI with grace and an eye toward college. HTH schools perform a refreshing approach to school. Teachers are relatable to students and create challenging projects in every subject. HTH teachers are able to help students discover their personal interests in part due to smaller class sizes. These schools are not for every student however. If your student needs a regimented, impersonal, traditional school to graduate, than this is not the place for your student. Students here are learning not only about language arts, math, and science, they are also learning that money, looks, and social status are not always prerequisites for success. Anyone can achieve academic success at HTH Village schools if they are willing to apply themselves.
Our son graduated from HTHCV 2011 and was accepted on full academic scholarship to a very expensive private school back east - 100% of his friends were accepted into college and are attending college to some degree to this day. This school is NOT for every child. Forget the hype and focus on your own child and find a specific school that fits your child's needs. Our son was self-motivated, self-disciplined, and flourished at HTHCV because he didn't require 24/7 supervision to do his work. He was allowed to speak and be heard and very much needed the small class size to succeed. He loved the projects he worked on. He loved his teachers. He'd stay at school 10 hours a day if we let him. At the same time, we saw many students around him fail and leave HTHCV over the 4 years - why? They couldn't keep up with the course work and the requirements, they blamed the teachers and their parents blamed the teachers - none of these kids accepted responsibility for their own failures and none that I'm aware of ended up going to college. HTHCV has its flaws but for the right student it is truly the best program out there!
I m a parent of an 8th grader who attends HTMCV. This is a beautiful new building sitting in the outskirts of Chula overlooking big open spaces of the Otay Valley. All young, beautiful and enthusiastic teachers, safe environment for the kids but that s where the positive ends. I ended up pulling my 5th grader out of the HT elementary. He was having a hard time adjusting to the no text books, no homework and no real math mentality. He hated the school & didn t understand why at their age they had to sit around the carpet and have the teacher read & act out third grade reading level books to them. Not much really changes with the upper grades. HT Staff does not discuss school's academic performance; my questions to them have gone unanswered. Town hall meetings are about the beautiful school & how lucky we are to have our kids there rather than showing the accountability reports. Most parents do not question the school because they get caught up in the hype. The ones who are finding out the many faults of the HT schools system are the ones paying attention, questioning their kids and doing quite a bit of research. I ll be pulling out my 8th grader next year as well.