Taft high school is a great high school, if you attend Ib, AVID,ROTC or the Academic Center. If you do regulars, then your going to have to work really hard to excel in your class. In the good programs that I stated above, kids are respectful to the teachers, do their work and talk once in a while. But in regulars, its chaotic! Im a student at Taft and am a part of IB, but the few regular classes I have are nightmares. Kids swear at the teacher, argue with them, talk as if their outside of school and once in a while, you'll see a few kids using a hookah pen(in class). Now the new principal is doing excellent and the programs their are at a Lane Tech-Northside level, their are some underlying problems here that need to be fixed to reach those levels. First, we have to get rid of the terrible guards here who seem to respect the troublemakers and scream at the kids who are doing nothing wrong. You need your id present when you walk into the lunchroom, but the guards don't even check, they just stare at your face when you walk in. Second problem, the bathrooms here are a mess!! Their are no locks on the stall doors, their is graffiti on the walls and the bathroom overall smells like a sewer(their is also puddles and 2 pieces of toilet paper!) and lastly, we need to discipline some of these kids in regulars. They smoke after school, during school and before school, fight like bulls in the lunchroom and just don't care about their grade. We need to stop caring for these individuals because they don't care about grades, they care about how "dope is cool" and "swag is for life", and meanwhile we employ excellent teachers to teach these fools who'd rather skip school than learn. But overall, Taft is an amazing school with a great science program, theater program and music program. makes sure though to enter a academic program than regulars cause you'll find yourself unchallenged in regulars.
I'm currently an 8th grader in the academic center and my experience has been amazing. I wanted to go to Lane for middle school but didn't get in but Taft is honestly a gem in comparison. We are balanced in academics, athletics, and socializing. I took 2 Honors high school classes as a seventh grader and now 5 as an eight grader. I had such an amazing experience these two years & it's definitely worth it to go here. I feel so prepared for high school. When I got here I realized I wasn't in the top 50 of my grade and with the help of everyone now I'm going to Northside College Prep for high school. Taft has the key to success it just depends how much work you put in. By the way our high school acceptances are great: almost ten of us are going to northside, around 5 to Whitney, over ten to jones, one to Payton, a lot to lane, and a lot are staying at Taft for IB.
My daughter is in the 7th grade Academic Center at Taft. She LOVES it. The teachers and counselors are outstanding. The new principal and assistant principal are very responsive to the concerns of the community and very proactive in engaging the students. I would highly recommend any parent sending their child to Taft for both the Academic Center program or the high school program. There are great things happening at this outstanding neighborhood school.
As an alumnus from Taft High School (Class Of 1971), I have returned to help my Alma Mater. I truly believe that all alumni should pay it forward and thus help the young people succeed in this world. When I attended Taft, I was involved in Junior Achievement and learned how to be a successful business person. Today I talk to various clubs at Taft and point the way so that they can achieve a bright future. I have organized many tribute concerts for Terry Kath, co-founder of the band, Chicago who graduated Taft in 1964. I have also witnessed many students who have become academically sound because their parents have become very involved in their education. The new Principal, Mr. Mark Grishaber has been very creative in reaching out to the entire student body and insisting that each student be on time every day of the school year. I know that he will be successful in returning Taft to its former status, the greatest neighborhood school in the City of Chicago. Every school has its problems. If students work together with the Administration, I firmly believe that Taft will be considered a class high school and will change for the better.
SO BAD! Don't send your kids there! I hate it so much! I graduated from 8th grade there a few months ago and was accepted into a SEHS. The Academic Center is great for preparing you for high school but the teachers are mostly horrible and is in a nighborhood high school environment. Taft is my neighborhood high school but I would never consider going there. There are drugs and smoking in the bathroom and the resources are limited and very old. It does not deserve an 8 out of 10. Look at the test scores. No, not the ISATs that the middle schoolers made, but the PSAE testing. The security is so bad and lax. The new stand-in principal is distant and doesn't care. The teachers are either way too old or young.One time I spent an entire lunch period pushing around a garbage can because I was wearing a NAVY BLUE HOODIE. It was my first week as a 7th grader! Some of the highschoolers will bully you and pressure you into things. Also, straight A's there are too easy to achieve and honors and regulars are pretty much the same. IB is okay.There were some dumb kids there. The highest GPA there last year was only about a 5.2..Less than the average of a school like NCP or Payton. Eh Bad memories