For the high-tax dollars, and past reputation, you'd think this place would rival any top high school. Sadly, not anymore. Super's focused on building, and while some teachers are world class, there are others who are outright horrid people - and head of the unions. Love them to do a zero-based budget & use that bloat for rehab, which IS needed. I went, and thrived, but that was 35 years back. Our first kid went, and gave up. Disorganized system, uncaring staff, and it's simply too big to be managed well even if leadership was great - which it isn't. And college placement is abysmal - talk to actual college admissions to get real scoop. Amusing, if it weren't sad. So we'll be going private for our next child - and still paying sky-high taxes. Perhaps Wilmette should have their own HS....
I currently attend this school, and while it's not perfect, it's definitely a nice place to be. I have yet to encounter this diversity issue others have brought up, and the size problem. Sure, the staircases get a bit crowded, but teacher student ratio is excellent and you can always ask your teacher for extra help. If you'd like to learn in a more logistical way, enroll in a lower level course--that's what they're for, while higher levels assume the information is already learned by the students and teaching is more vague. Students have cliques, but get along and I would like to see a high school where everyone gets along. It is the student's job to find themselves because its a simulation of real life.
I am currently a student at Northfield, and after reading all of the previous reviews I am shocked. The diversity issue is non existent. The are all kinds of kids enrolled at Northfield this year, and I am not just talking about white kids and asian kids who normally dominate the class. In my advisory alone their are three different kids who immigrated from another country, not just have parents from a different culture. The school has also been putting all the freshman through names day which is a really moving experience, where your peers stand up at open mike and talk about how bullying and name calling have hurt them during their school years. That really helped with an issue that occurred after getting assimilated into our new school with kids we had never met. Name calling in bullying is not an issue here at Northfield.
NT is way too big. Far too many opportunities for kids to fall through the cracks. The sports are highly competitive and there are so many kids that you are competing with a huge number for just a few spots on a team. The classes are very large so there is not a lot of in depth discussions during class and the burden is on the student to do the work at home. If the school were to split into two campuses again it would be a much more manageable situation.
This school is A plus and has so much to offer students with a variety of interests, whether they be sports, arts, social service, politics, academics, etc. The teachers really care about the students and are very available for extra help. They expect the students to be proactive in getting assistance which which helps prepare them to be independent in college and in life. i wish I had all that New Trier has to offer when I was in high school.
New Trier is the least innovative, least interesting school in the area by far, and it does not surprise me in the slightest that it is never listed in anyone's top school list, anymore. the school is way too large, anyway.
Despite all the rhetoric about the wide-ranging course options you child will have, just TRY to find a course for the World History requirement that teaches traditional, chronological history, without silly projects and with special emphasis on the culture we are ALL members of, western civilization. Nope, doesn't exist: it's their way or the highway. Or, try to find English courses that emphasize grammar and writing, with literature choices dominated by a time-tested canon and free of blatant ideological bias. Nope again. (Try not to gag on the description of the required junior year English course.) Try to get anyone to show you how well NT achieves, NOT on the basis on grade points and test scores (highly determined by the training and family preparation of the kids that the school starts with) but rather on value-added assessment (VAA). Finally, worry about the superintendent's talk about needing more constructivism.
I am a student at New Trier. All though it is a great school, the diversity of our school is unbeliveable. I came from WHJS and there was one black child in the grade. The transition is a shocking one seeing that more than half of the students are white and the rest are most likly asian. The school should try to enroll a more diverse crowd.
I believe New Trier school is an excellent school to put your children into. It's one of the top schools in the nation(public). It has thousands of programs despite what the previous parent said about diversity. Their special education program for the extremely disabled is excellent. They have one on one aids for each child and make the children feel as normal as possible. They have just gotten a new principal who is in fact changing things around a bit. The school rules are much more strict and children are unable to get away with name calling with out recieving a breakfast club. Espicially with security in every single hallway.
Putting all 14 year olds in the district in one large school is a very bad idea. Bullying, racial harrassment and gay bashing are very common and ignored by teachers. The leadership at this school denies there are any problems and because students only attend for one year, it is difficult to get problems addressed since the administration's attitude is 'ship them to Winnetka' (for grades 10-12) rather than address anything in the 9th grade. The special education programs are particularly poorly run compared to Winnetka's elementary schools (which are administered by a different school district).
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