I vacillate on the quality of this school. Having children at both Payton and Northside gives me insight into each. Both schools have unique pluses and minuses. Northside has some excellent teachers, and truly an amazing art and music department that positively affects all other disciplines. Where it really suffers is in college counseling. Parents should be throughly prepared to do 99% of the research and work themselves. The staff is overwhelmed, under qualified, and most unfortunately, often uncaring. The lengths we had go to to get information, recommendations, and transcripts delivered on time and with accuracy were crazy. Our child got into her first choice and several other fine schools, however, having been through the process at Payton, I know it did not have to be such a truly awful process. Up through junior year, I would have given Northside 4 stars, but the college office staff really soured our experience. Parents, do the work yourselves the staff doesn't know your child and they're willing to settle for almost any college.
Teacher's are not very good. Staff is very unhelpful. If you want to go to northside you better be prepared to teach yourself all 4 years because teachers won't teach you anything but expect you to just know it. Not a very collaborative school and its only number 1 because it takes the best kids in the city.
We attended the open house at Northside and were very disappointed. We waited outside for 30min (last tour). Finally we walk inside and were seated in the gym area. I didn't get the great vibe feeling we got from Whitney Young/Jones. The presentation was not impressive and lacked enthusiasm by the lady behide the podium. The kids and I spent the whole time looking at the screen behind her over and over agin. The presentation was boring. The tour was cut short because it was getting late. We only went into one room and the pool. We were sent to the first floor... The End
My daughter is a Junior at this school. I have watched an extremely intelligent and happy young girl turn into a stressed out and deflated human being in trying to keep up with the rigorous, exhausting and competitive environment there. Im sure there are some kids who are capable of handling this type of school. But all of my daughters friends hate it and many in therapy due to the stress and depression created from trying to be worthy of this place. Adolescence is so tough as it is. Please do your child a favor and find a normal school to put them in.
My child is a sophomore this year, and so far I've been very impressed with the depth and rigor of classes. I've also admired the recently departed, long-standing principal, Barry Rodgers and the A.P. Dr. Murphy (who is also leaving). I hope that the new administration, starting Nov. 1st, will continue the tradition of academic excellence and solid community building that has existed so far. I also hope this new administration will be able to work around the ridiculous mandates issued by CPS, and did Principal Rodgers. At the first freshman year Parent-Teacher conference, I found my son's teachers to be extremely caring, and observant about our son. They were quite familiar with the challenges of the teen years, and the pitfalls that can trip up students in a rigorous academic learning environment.. In several weeks I'll be meeting with our son's sophomore year teachers, and hope to be similarly impressed. While our son is extremely bright and talented, I believe that he is very privileged to attend Northside. It is a good fit for him, but would not be a good fit for his very smart sibling who happens to have some learning challenges.
Northside has proven excellent for my daughter who is entering her senior year. Its teachers are only outdistanced by its varied, yet well-rounded student body. It rightfully sets the standard for public education in Illinois..
I am currently a senior at Northside and will be attending the University of Southern California in the fall. First off, it is definitely not true that everyone who goes here can get into an Ivy League school. Year in and year out, most (actually a majority) go to UIC or U of I, which is better than a lot of city schools where kids have dropped out or do not go to college, but is no more impressive than where suburban schools send their grads. That being said, I am a strong believer that what you put in is what you get. I feel like the people that complain about teachers acting cocky and not delivering on promises they make expect their hand to be held thru the whole 4 years. That's not going to happen at any school. Students that actively seek out the amazing resources at this school will be rewarded. And if everyone did that here, probably a lot more people would be going to Harvard (not that Harvard is the school for everyone anyway; it's all about fit). The biggest knock against Northside is its incredibly awful math curriculum, IMP. It leaves all but those whose brains are hard-wired for math unprepared for college, a great irony at a college "prep" school.
I am extremely happy with my child s experience at Northside College Prep. She is a junior and since her freshman year she has been heavily recruited by top universities nationwide. The opportunities that this school has opened up for her are unlimited. Although she works hard, she has been able to balance her academics with her social life and maintain a high grade point average. What I like best is that unlike many other public high schools, there is very little negative peer pressure to distract her. At Northside, it is o.k. for academically talented girls to shine and not feel afraid of how they are being perceived by others, because studying hard and getting good grades are the rule and not the exception.
I am very disappointed in this school. While their staff is decorated with awards and degrees, it seems some have missed the point of teaching, the students. Most of the students attending Northside have no problem managing the content and workload, but what happens to the few students who struggle at this school of over achieving staff and students? Nothing...The teachers do not seem to attempt or even care that some students may struggle in a certain subject or may be missing some key skills to help them become successful. Why are teachers at this school not expected to meet the needs of every student? Will this tarnish the image of Northside? How do the teachers differentiate their instruction? I am not impressed with awards and degrees I want to know how the teachers teaching and how students are learning.