Students enrolled 3270
School leader Grettel Castro-Stanley

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1776 Educational Park Drive
San Jose, CA 95133

School website
(408) 928-9500
(408) 928-9515
Nearby homes for sale
Map of Independence High School address.

4 stars
Based on 59 ratings

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think about this school

August 16, 2013
My school is awesome because when you don't understand or misunderstand something you could always asks teachers to assistance you to became understanding the problems, and you will know that once you get it would be a piece of a cake of any subjects.

- submitted by a student
August 13, 2012
I am a parent of 2 kids in IHS. My kids are doing well in school. one is in Sophomore and one is in Junior. I was nervous when sending my kids to this school due to negative reputation but now 3rd years with this school my kid are doing well and happy wtih friends and the teachers.

- submitted by a parent
December 04, 2011
Independence is a great school. My son graduated in 2010 and is an UCSD sophomore. Most of his friends got in UC. Actually, no matter which school you attend, if you study hard dream will come true.

- submitted by a parent
May 06, 2011
I graduated from IHS. Now I'm going to San Jose State University for Engineering (B.S.). This high school has a large campus and the second biggest campus of high school in USA. Teachers are really friendly and good security with police on campus.

- submitted by a student
April 30, 2010
I am a graduating this year from Indepedence and am going to UCSD this fall. I have to disagree many of the reviews. Independence does not have lower academic standards and if the student feels that the classes are not challenging enough, there are classes called 'AP' classes. As for the rumors about the school being violent and agressive, every school has bad students; I have seen two fights this year, and both were broken up almost immediately by security. independence simply has a higher population, and with this all of our activities are done on a much larger scale than other schools. However, the budget cuts have hit the school extremely hard this year and many teachers and advisors are being cut. The next few years will be hard for many students and teachers in the East Side Union High School District.

- submitted by a student
no rating March 02, 2010
My 1rst child who had graduated from Piedmont HS (2006) continued to do well in UC Santa Cruz ( now senior ). My 2nd child graduated from Independence HS ( 2008) and continued to do well too at UCBerkely(now sophomore). I had been reluctant to send my 2nd child to Independence HS because of all the negative rumors but my child has turned out to be fine . He had witnessed fights twice during his 4 years at Independence HS and learnt how to avoid it. At Berkeley, He had been approached by a homeless twice and managed to get out of the situation safely. He had witnessed violence at the Bart on the way home from Berkely and still remaint fine. He's managed to adjust himself to the large and diverse campus at UCB partly because he 'd been used to the large size and diverse ethnic groups at Independence HS.

- submitted by a parent
February 28, 2010
This school's low academic standards fool students into thinking they're doing well eventhough they're not. Drugs, gangs, violence are a regular part of this school, but the admin. likes to keep that undisclosed. If a student is failing, they send him off to one of the alternative schools, or to an adult school, so that he, or she, won't show up in their statistics as a failure. Don't trust the student evaluations--they go by how much 'fun' they can have, not by how much they actually learn. As an employer, I've found I can't rely on the grades students get at Independence; they are meaningless.

- submitted by a community member
no rating February 27, 2010
I belive that this school is a violent and agressive school. With all the fights and everything.Its a very i would never reccomend this school ever. Thatswhy i am transfering my daughter to piedmont high school

- submitted by a parent
no rating October 18, 2009
IHS is not the typical high school that you would see on TV. Everyone is able to get along without having upperclassmen pick on lowerclassmen. In fact, our Link Crew Program encourages the opposite. The upperclassmen help the freshmen transition to high school in a nice environment and friendly atmosphere. We are also very diverse and offer a large variety of clubs. It's hard not to find a club you like!

- submitted by a student
no rating October 04, 2009
i love independence cause we have hecka clubs and we have a club day! theres also this thing called link crew in out school and they help the fresmen out 1-2 time a month!they go out of ther classes just to help lead the freshmen around!hecka nice! plus, we put a lot of effort in our school to make sure that the student sre having fun at school about learning and having a good time!!!

- submitted by a parent
September 24, 2009
IHS has served me well these past 2 years! The staff are great and the students are chill!

- submitted by a student
September 24, 2009
Extensive programs, good teachers, lotsa students. This school is HUGE and that's what we love about it!

- submitted by a student
no rating September 23, 2009
Independence High School is one of the biggest and most diverse schools that you will ever go to. The students and teachers are both very nice and there is a lot for everyone to do!

- submitted by a student
September 22, 2009
The school is very big, the facility is AWESOME. Most of the people are very friendly, great teachers, and the sports team are very fun to be apart of and we have a great gym. There is a lot of diversity at our school. :)

- submitted by a parent
September 22, 2009
Indy is one of the best schools ever. Nice campus, good teachers, and very diverse. I love this school.

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 22, 2009
Independence is the best! It offers many classes and is althogether not as bad as everyone else thinks.

- submitted by a student
September 22, 2009
As a former Sixer I can tell you that this school has some of the best teachers and a lovely campus. The students are nice and the staff helpful. Go Indy!

- submitted by a community member
no rating September 22, 2009
I think Independence has become a very decent school in the past years and only show signs of improving. Good Job.

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 20, 2009
This school is the best ! It's name really suites the spirit and student body ! We are independent but can stand alone. It's a huge school, but we are all united (=

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 20, 2009
Some clubs offers opportunities such as scholerships and can help you find your true passion. There are lots of electives to choose from. There is a large variety in athletic groups.

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 20, 2009
I LOVE INDEPENDENCE, it's so unique. Im a freshmen, and i always thought when i would go to high school, higher class grades would be very scary. But nah, i look up to them. Inde is a very friendly school.

- submitted by a student
August 21, 2009
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- submitted by a parent
June 03, 2009
INDEPENDENCE IS AWESOME. Ever since I moved into the area, I knew Independence was the high school for me. What I first liked about it was the fact that IT WAS BIG!!! What other way can you prep up a student for a college environment? This is a great school. I graduated in 2006, with a great bunch of friends. Many of whom are now attending UC's across the state, MIT, Liberty University, UOP, SJSU, Mission College, De Anza, and many more. A lot of my class would stand behind me to say how great Independence is. However, it's the students that make the school great. High school is a time for you to start experiencing your future life. Independence has it all. There are great students there, great clubs, clubs for all kinds of things, great programs, and many more. Independence is the High School where your life begins!

- submitted by a student
April 17, 2009
Indy is one of the best school around. I went there, so I know a thing or two about it. There are many outstanding AP classes with great instructors. About the fight, this is just a bubble rumor, which is not true at all. Let's all be honest, every school has some bad students, so we cannot judge a school base on those students. After all, Indy is a GREAT school, and you will not regret going there!

- submitted by a student
March 01, 2009
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a student
January 25, 2009
Great school. Everything a student can want

- submitted by a teacher
November 26, 2008
This school is definetly not that bad! This school supports all students and they have alot of clubs. there's been so much rumor about independence and they make it sound worse than it really is. Sure, its located in a complicated location but trust me, its not that bad - believe me . The education counts on your child , but not the school. The school does all its can to teach the students before the school year ends. Trust me, parents. Independence is my preferred school. Even over Silver creek.

- submitted by a parent
August 20, 2008
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a student
June 21, 2008
Hey, Independence is a great school and it if your child is doing 'Bad' in that school because he or she does not met the requirement... in other words being lazy to walk to class or being stupid on doing something else besides learning. And this school have many things that your child can participate in... for example me.. i particpate in Space technology and i learn many things about space and how to built space craft and how it works. I also learn to built a radio, computers and etc. But to let you all notice this is only space tech.. there's Eletronic techonology class out there also which let your child learn how to built cars and machanic and learn about eletricity. Many magnet programs here at Independence offers many technology knowledges. Last but not least, this school have a lot of Magnet programs soo Enjoy!

- submitted by a student
May 27, 2008
My husband and I attended James Lick, so when our Son told us he wanted to attend I.H.S., we were crushed. Needless to say, we are so glad that he is a 76er. His Counselor knew him from day one and guided him all through his high school years at Indy. He will be graduating in June, attending San Jose State University with a grade point average of 3.8 and will major in Music. The Music program at Indy is outstanding. Our daughter is a Freshman and I know that having her attend INDY will prepare her for college and a bright future.

- submitted by a parent
March 18, 2008
My child is a freshman at Indy and I am an alumni of PHHS. I will admit at first, I was unsure if I wanted him to go IHS. The school was so big and everybody was telling me not to send him there. I am very pleased with our decision for him to go to IHS. He has so many opportunities avaialable to him that I did not have at PHHS. I have found many opportunities to continue to be involved, he loves the programs and extra curricular activities that are available. As for the fights, the rare occassion that there is one I generally hear about them before my son does. My child is thriving and I would tell another parent not to listen to the bad things everyone says. I also hear bad things about PHHS and MP and Lick too, but that doesn't mean they are true.

- submitted by a parent
February 26, 2008
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a student
February 26, 2008
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
January 29, 2008
I have to admit I was a little tense on my first day of school four years ago, what with all the violent rumors; however, I soon found these things were really just fabrications of people who didn't know any better. The thing is, Independence High School is a wonderful school. The curriculum (with teachers who wield an astounding affinity for their subject) is only matched by its extracurricular programs, which includes a (literally) top-of-its-class marching band, a (literally) nationally renowned yearbook, and a theatre/dance department with (literally) professional equipment any other school would be hard-pressed to find. The opportunities Independence High School offers to its students are unmatched--students just have to take advantage of them. Believe me--at Independence, we learn far more than anyone could ever imagine.

- submitted by a student
no rating November 08, 2007
SO far from being in Independence, I learned a lot from just being a sophomore. I was about to move to a different high school because of my father concern but i persuade him that IHS isn't as bad as it is. Yes, many said it was old, dirty, moldy, lack of teachers or education, but this year the principle gave the school a whole new paint job! and we got new pe equipments and many other things. I heard when I was little that HIS had a bad rep but now it s a little better. It not the school it s the students and now a days many students lack the self-esteem of learning. We take an advantaged of that here in the US and I learn that we are given too much freedom and many teenagers doesn t no what hard work is in life. By going to IHS I am hoping that I can be able to achieve my dream career. Many parents are also concern about their children safety and they don t have to worry about it here because we always have many more advisors around the school grounds watching over us. Our school holds over 4,000 students and I am hoping that the students become more spirited through out the year because Independence has many fun activity and interesting events happening during lunch. Many students of HIS also have been making petition of many things like making a Japanese foreign language class etc. Students may say that Independence is a little boring but that s because they don t participate in school. Overall I think sending your child to Independence High is entirely up to you, but if your child does bad please don t blame it on the school because most of the times its your Childs fault for causing trouble or doing bad. This school gives your child many opportunities to do well and to gain their full education, but they take an advantaged of that.

- submitted by a student
August 22, 2007
Before you misjudge the school, remind yourself that the school does have 4,000 kids so the more policemen on patrol means the more security (off a sidenote someone had said). I'm a current student, done with one year. Fights are pretty rare, and the fights can be easily broken up as in a minute. Academic doesn't depend on school, it depends on your student. If you're student did bad, it's their fault for not doing their work as peer pressure in highschool sets them. There are alot of clubs for involvement, alot including to give back to the community. 'Link crew', helps new incoming freshmen feel welcomed by providing them ideas and challenges they may face throughout high school. School is great, just that involvement is the key to making it good. Remember, 4,000 kids; not 1,200 in other standard schools.

- submitted by a student
March 07, 2007
I am an alumni of this school. Compare indy to other high school around the bay area, indy offer much more magnet program, extracurricular activities, sports, music, and art. The reason they are able to offer a vast variation of things for kids like me to do is because the school is big! Most parents do not like that indy is so big but in a way indy is preparing us for college and the future. The school have given me, my brothers, and many other students opportunity to learn and explore. There was many elective ranging from auto shop to photography. There was so many ap and honors class to take and prepare for college and at the same time get credit so we don't have to take it again in college. There is also so many sport to choose from. To conclude, indy prepare us for the future.

- submitted by a former student
February 27, 2007
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- submitted by a parent
September 05, 2006
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a student
June 12, 2006
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- submitted by a parent
June 07, 2006
As a graduate of Independence High School and the sibling of four other alumni or current students, I rate this school very highly. In my time there, I learned a great deal, not only academically, but about myself as a person. Despite the reputation of Eastside San Jose, Independence offers a large variety of honors and AP courses. The quality of these teachers was very high during my term there. I credit these instructors with preparing me for college and for life. The lessons I learned in their classrooms extend far into other sectors of my life. It was at Independence that I gained awareness of myself as a political citizen of the United States and of myself as a creative human being.

- submitted by a former student
June 04, 2006
I give my highest recommendations to school. The academic programs of this school nonetheless exceeded my expectations by 10 fold by the least. Before my child attended this school, he was barely recieving a 2.0 GPA, however after attending Independence High School, his GPA shot up from his measely 2.0 to a 3.7. The sport programs avaliable at this school are also amazing, the amount of participation of the student body and dedication to their sports are so much more than my child's previous school, The Harker School. I was blown away by the determination some of the kids have here. In addition to the involvement of the student body in their academics and extracurricular activities, I was also suprised by the level of parent involvement. Being a middle class working parent, I barely have time to participate in school activities. The others are the same but they find time!

- submitted by a parent
May 02, 2006
Huge, nice music program and many sports to choose from, but a kid can get lost in this school as I did and end up with the wrong crowd.

- submitted by a student
April 06, 2006
You may find this school too big to function but you couldn't be more wrong. There are so many clubs and programs here that can't be offered at smaller schools.

- submitted by a former student
February 16, 2006
Goos academic programs, just about any course you can think of. Tons of clubs, and sports activities. This school has alot to offer for those that take it. With a school this large it's easy to feel overwhelmed. Best way to not get lost in the system is to apply yourslef and heavy parent involvement. As for the 'violence' problems, this school has no more fight per capita than any other school. It's just alot larger so the numbers grow accordingly. Well staffed security.

- submitted by a former student
February 14, 2006
Many fights. Large school.

- submitted by a former student
November 11, 2005
On behalf of Special Ed services; Academic programs are great and the school uses a lot of different career/vocational oriented assignments. There are several clubs and groups for a student to join. The school is even initiating a new career acedemy this year for the 9th graders in Special Ed.

- submitted by a staff
October 20, 2005
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- submitted by a parent
September 07, 2005
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- submitted by a former student
August 31, 2005
This school used to be better but now it's has become pretty bad. The students have no rights and the teachers aren't all that great.

- submitted by a student
August 16, 2005
This school used to be a better school, but in recent years it could use an improvement in the area of academics.

- submitted by a former student
August 15, 2005
The academic level is not that challenging. The music, art and sports are fine.

- submitted by a parent
July 15, 2005
Independence is a really big school and was ment to be a college, but is a very good school compared to other schools in the area. This school has many clubs and do have AP classes.

- submitted by a student
May 10, 2005
BEST PRINCIPAL EVER!!!!!! good school. but lacking with security issues!!!!! Security is not enough and teachers don't care!!!!

- submitted by a student
April 04, 2005
This is a great school with ever-improving test scores.

- submitted by a parent
April 02, 2005
This is a larger school of about 2000 students. It can be overwhelming. If your an athlete its tough to make the squad. You have more kids to compete against. I went there in 1988 and my daughter is a sophmore now. Academically it is your avarage highschool. Nice gym, olympic size pool and fields. great clubs and associations.

- submitted by a former student
March 16, 2005
This school is too big. It makes it hard for students to form solid relationships with their peers. However, the school has excellent classes and clubs available, and the music department and teacher is absolutely wonderful!

- submitted by a parent
February 11, 2005
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
December 14, 2004
Good diversity with student population..

- submitted by a parent
June 15, 2004
The Space Technology Magnet seemed to help my child get adjusted to the rest of the high school because they had the same classes with other kids from the space tech. magnet.

- submitted by a former student
May 05, 2004
I am not a parent of anyone but I am a first year student and I have experienced the caring and very good environment this school has for it's students. There have been rare fights but if you stick in a good group of friends this can be avoided. This school has many clubs and teachers that are wonderful! I hope you don't think otherwise of this school because it really is a pretty great school.

- submitted by a student
April 22, 2004
Overall, Independence is a great school which is located on a gigantic campus! There are some factors that need to be taken into consideration when discussing Independence, such as the school population and the overall environment of the campus location. Independence educates approximately 4,000 students a year. For some (students, parents, teachers, etc) a student population this large is not feasible. In addition, individual needs to be aware of the things that go on outside the school grounds. When keeping the location of the school (east side) in mind, one can comprehend why there may be an occasional fight on campus. Factors such as, the large student body and the location of the campus are not a problem. The problem resides in the leader of the school.

- submitted by a parent
February 10, 2004
Independence is a great high school despite all the rumors you hear. Yes, there are cops on campus but it s not because there are rival gang fights everyday. We have to keep in mind that this is a huge high school with a head count of 4000 plus students each year. We have cops patrolling the campus because it s huge and nothing else. 76% of teachers have a full credential, but we have to take into consideration that Independence has approximately 160 teachers while most other high schools only have approximately 40 teachers. For those of you who still don t get it, this means that Independence has approximately 121 teachers with full credentials leaving approximately 38 teachers without full credentials. This is a great school with great resources, so stop listening to rumors and go take a walk on campus.

- submitted by a former student
January 06, 2004
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- submitted by a parent
November 26, 2003
Independence is by far the best high school in East Side Union High School District. They have much more students than Piedmont and they get better grades. The music program is the best. They have the best marching band, wind ensemble, symphony orchestra and jazz band I have ever heard in a high school. I am a professional jazz musician and I know that it is vital for children to be challenged. For any musician that wants to excell, go to Independence. I know that Ken Ponticelli is the best music director around and he will steer your child in the right direction.

- submitted by a community member
October 29, 2003
As a parent, I am alarmed to see so many policemen on campus. I have been told that there are constant rival gang fights. Instead of more police officers, the principal should take a more proactive approach with the students-listen to their needs First, and respect your teacher's viewpoints. Indepedence has some outstanding special education teachers- but they are never rcognized by the principal. Please take a proactive approach on discipline issues too our child depend on YOU!!

- submitted by a parent
September 27, 2003
This school was once a California Distinquished School but has gone downhill since the arrival of the current principal. The poor leadership of this school has results in poor morale of the teachers and poor academics and discipline among the students. The school is not a safe environment with gang fights weekly.

- submitted by a parent
August 26, 2003
I am not a parent but I am former student from Independence High School. Class of 1998. There is no other school like this one, I am sure. They have the best programs, clubs that range from The Gay and Lesbian Alliance to The Fishing Club. Can you believe that? A fishing club! The teachers were all great to me. Mrs.Pierson and Kelly Dodd who are part of the Performing Arts Academy at independence and my former dance instuctors are a few good favorites. Now when your child has a favorite teachers, you know they're doing something right! Miss ya guys. INDEPENDANCE 97

- submitted by a former student
August 15, 2003
My daughter graduated from Independence High School two years ago. The AP/Honors program is fairly strong, it prepared her for the work she currently has to do at a topranked UC. Unfortunately, due to the principal's misguided concepts, she has rerouted funding for academics towards sports. Due to that, Independence lost some really excellent teachers who left to teach at other schools. Aside from the excellent AP/Honors program, the student population at this school is mediocre.

- submitted by a parent
August 15, 2003
Not all of the teachers have full credentials that will provide a great education for the students. Also, there is lack of leadership on the side of the principal, who does not get along with her employees.

- submitted by a former student
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Independence High School
1776 Educational Park Drive, San Jose, CA  95133
(408) 928-9500
Last modified Independence High School is a Public school that serves grades 9-12. It has received a GreatSchools rating of 6 out of 10 based on academic quality.
Independence High School Rating: 4 out of 5 based on 70 reviews. Top