Academically, you're not going to get a better place for a public school. I'm a senior and can say that while I love Hanover's drive for academic success, it can become incredibly stressful at times. The pressure for us as students to perform at a high level is intense; I have a 3.77 GPA and I'm ranked fairly low among my peers, who hold 3.8 like a golden standard as to whether or not you're a great student. Besides the academic pressure, I've also experienced my share of social pressure. Because Hanover is a fairly wealthy community, it produces high schoolers with very nice and expensive materials. It seems like everyone has a Macbook and an iPhone or other variety of smartphone. I don't have one and get along just fine, but it does deplete your social status just a bit. Finally, the part that makes me give Hanover a four star rating is the teachers. I have had incredible teachers my four years at Hanover that have all wanted to see me succeed. Whether you come into the school with a 4.0 or a 3.0, there is always going to be someone willing to stand in your corner to make sure you perform to your best. So, great academic school but a lousy one socially. That's all there is to it.
I graduated from HHS several years ago. My experience may be a bit dated but I do recognize several teachers and faculty on the current directory. My experience is that HHS is an outstanding public high school for high achieving students. Where it falls short is dealing with the average (B and C type grades) or special needs students. As a little bit of a late bloomer academically, and thus just an average high school student, I was written off by several teachers. One very highly regarded teacher even told my parents she did not want to "waste" her time with me because I was a "lost cause". Well I graduated college with honors, have a masters degree, make well into six figures annually, and am trusted with the lives of hundred of people daily, so her professional judgement was way off base. Like I said, it is a great public school for high academically achieving students, several classmates attended the Ivy League schools and other highly prestigious universities. But average and special needs students can expect to become surprisingly lost for such a small school.
I am unfortunate enough to be a student at this school and I hate it. Its cliquey and cold. The teachers are good but the culture in this school is such that kids are overworked and stressed. Kids never get a break. I cant wait get out of here. Don't send your kids here!
We chose to live in Hanover for the schools and it was the best decision we could have made. Our kids ('10, '12) never had a social problem, have received wonderful educations in and out of the classroom. The only complaint would be the enormous amount of homework, more work than the oldest is getting at a top-10 national college.
All of the students that say that the academics are substandard are severely exaggerating. Hanover High has some of the best academics in NH. That's not to say it is an easy school at all. It is a very competitive school in academics and sports. I have noticed that there are some cliques, and some people tend to think that if you don't fit 'the bill' that it's hard to 'fit in'. Although Hanover has the reputation of being preppy, there are all sorts of groups to hang out with. I for instance hang out with the 'urban outfitters-esk' group of people. There are all types of groups from preppy populars, to the singers and everything in between. Hanover High will certainly get you ready for college but the academics are very intense.
i am currently a student at hanover, and i find the school to be an accepting place, with a lot of academic opportunities. I can however see how students who choose not to take advantage of those opportunities feel left out or unaccepted. It is a place where everybody is expected to try their best academically and overall.
Very good school and has other alternative programs if the school is not a match for the child yet still receive a diploma if one needs to go elsewhere such as more focused technical program
This school is god awful. It has an immense presence of cliques, and it truly is hard to make friends in such a biased environment.
'06 graduate; I think it was quite a good school and an overall great experience. Academics are ranging and as demanding as the student wishes essentially. Teachers are qualified and excellent on average. Boasts an impressive placement of its graduates at top schools. Not much you could ask for in a 'public' school. I've read a couple things about the presence of 'cliques', which I found to be somewhat interesting. I'm not sure if these students wanted 14-18 year olds to sit in a big circle singing together, but that seems pretty ridiculous. Given the circumstances, I was amazed out how integrated and accepting the student body was; it's not a place where you are a jock or a nerd athletes are often studious and/or intermingle with those more academically inclined. Very little 'bullying' for a high school. Maybe these students were unfriendly to others and still expected to be liked?
The expertise and commitment of a cadre of talented and exacting teachers.
I'm a former student of Hanover High School and it is a unique school. There is an open campus policy so you can leave school during free periods- much like a college. However, there is a lack of a sense of connectedness, respect of differences, kindness and diversity. If students are not part of the popular clique they may feel disconnected. The administrators do work diligently to provide good sport and academic programs but they do not seem aware of the importance of creating a positive and inclusive learning environment where all students feel respected and valued. The administration also has little interest in providing quality programming for special needs students. They do not work collaboratively with parents but rather take an adversarial, litigious approach. There is not a good faith effort to follow state and federal SPED laws. It's unfortunate and due to poor leadership choices at the highest levels.
This is a truly great high school with a great academic culture. It teaches responsibility through school democracy; parents who want the school to parent don't get this place. What is truly amazing is the cross-pollination of student groups; it's a place where it is okay to be different.
I am a former student, and now have a freshman child attending HHS. I must say as a student myself I am thrilled by the progression HHS has made in most areas. I would not send my son anywhere else.
former student continued...Another issue is social life. IF you fall into the category of outgoing and fit the right human shape model and your family can afford to be sure that you are dressed just so and fit in just so then you should be ok. However, it is very hard to feel comfortable there with the cliques and social pressure. I don't know anyone who would debate that. I have since seen schools where the kids are encouraged to intermingle more and get to know kids that they don't usually. I wish that HHS had some sort of help for those kids who felt they did not fit the 10% most polular bill and wonder what is wrong with them. Self Esteem? I can't imagine it comes from HHS, it is lost there, or found in college perhaps, or, again if you are in 'the' clique you may have it
This school was terrible. Substandard academics. Horrible cliques, and the faculty never went out of their way to help anyone. There were a few select teachers out there who were very understanding but overall, the worst school I ever attended.
I am also a graduate, as is my mother and grandmother, and must say it is one of the best. There was always a balance between personal freedom and academic expectations. The faculty always bent over backwards to assist all students. I only wish that I could return to the area and send my son to this school. There are always going to be students who abuse their open campus privileges... There may have been a slightly 'underwhelming' sense of school spirit, that was always overshadowed by the rewards of a stellar education.
My experience (3 kids graduated) was on the low end of satisfied. It is not as good as you would expect for the $14K/student cost. 1k/student for sports. $150/student on all other activities. Teacher quality is very uneven, some fabulous,several incompetent and arrogant.Kids are not challenged or encouraged to excel.80% seniors take only 5 classes in 7 period day. AP tests infrequently taken because students must study for them independently.
I am a former student of HHS. This high school has very high academic standards and my success there not only built my self-esteem but also prepared me well for success in college. It has an excellent selection of academic clubs. The school spirit is high.
Pretty strong academic school. Incredible peer pressure (I know from first hand experience!) Watch your kids close and they'll do fine here.
HHS gives it's students outstanding opportunities...academically, it's a truly unique highschool. The courses are challenging and prepare the students for college amazingly well. The problem is that there is no effective support system in place to help students with all of the stress. Ninety percent of the students at HHS will probably tell you they hate it; The school is very academically strong, but the administration refuses to admit to (and therefore deal with) the social and emotional issues that the school has.
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