This is my seventh year as a Brooklyn Tech parent (2 kids). I gave 5 stars but really wanted 4 1/2—very good, not great. To the parent who says that staff don't want to be there, maybe that's true for some, but not for the majority of teachers, imo. As for the sexual predator, unfortunately they're everywhere, even at ritzy private schools that cost over 30k/yr, and the best defense would seem to be good communication with our children. My kids have had some excellent and inspiring teachers, many very good ones, and only a couple of bad experiences. The course options are terrific, with the opportunity to advance to higher level and AP classes in every subject, and the history, English, and language classes are very strong. The sports offerings range from all the usual to golf, bowling and fencing. The students are a nice, enthusiastic, often geeky. You'll see them working on robots, architectural models, debating in the courtroom, analyzing a crime scene, or fund-raising for their club or charity. The day is jam packed, with no art or electives to break up the academics in the 9th & 10th grades (except music for good musicians). It's hard, but not outrageously so—my kids never worked past midnight, and anything over 3 hours an evening is bad planning or too many screens. The major system, which I didn't buy into at first, is great, and groups kids of similar interests in exciting classes. My only problems with the school are a few unbending rules and ridiculous policies. Some say it looks like a prison, and often it feels that it's run like one. It's almost impossible for a student to get a schedule changed, but the administration will change it on students without even telling them. Nobody gets to go out for lunch, not even seniors, and the kids are often treated with distrust as though they are potential delinquents, rather than with the consideration and maturity that's expected of them. Oh, and PE is factored in as a number grade in the GPA, but science lab is pass/fail—go figure. AP LOTE is so hard that most kids drop language rather than do it. However, overall, as a free NYC public school, it's an amazing education, and the sheer size and diversity is an education in itself.
For potential students—be very careful with doing regents or proficiency exams in 8th grade, because that bumps you up to a much harder class, or to an AP in junior year.
I am a Brooklyn Tech Alumnus, class of 1965. Tech was the best experience of my life. The best instructors, equipment, labs, ....nothing spared...the jewel of the education experience for New York City. What many do not realize is that Brooklyn Tech is structured like some of the best Engineering Universities. in fact many of the instructors come in from industry and former university staff positions. The first two years at Tech, without a doubt, is the equivalent of the first two years of any Technical College. When I graduated, I went to Worcester Poly Tech, and was surprised to find the Slurzberg and Osterheld, Fundamentals of Radio -Electronics Text being used at Worcester PolyTech for freshman and Sophomore courses. To all parents and students, expect Tech to be very difficult. It always has been. I worked a 12 hour day between classes and homework when I attend, ...and ended with a B+ average. Students... don't complain about the workload,. You will be glad for how it prepares you for college later. When you get to college, it will seem like high school and you will be ahead of everyone else....trust me. Parents...don't expect the D.O.E to lower the Tech standards to meet the ability of your son or daughter. If he or she cannot keep up, then perhaps he or she should not be there. Tech is a very special school for students with above average I.Q.s, creativity, aspirations, and potential. Good Luck!
Regards, R.S. Ranta, class of '65.
When I first started at Tech, I was a nervous-wreck. I was a fairly shy person and an introvert. I was scared to talk in front of the class and hated being called out in class. But as time passes, I've been noticing a drastic change in my personality and behavior. I became more open, I speak up when things are unreasonable, I started laughing a lot more, and I made lots of new friends. Tech is a very big place. Most students here aren't shy and most teachers are fairly decent. The only thing that sucks is the space. Lunch lines can take a long time, stairs are always crowded after every bell, lockers are located only in classrooms, and the elevators can get very cramped. But those are considered minor problems. Tech provides you with loads of opportunities and provide you with the latest news everyday. Unless you don't check your emails everyday, you'll always know what's going on at school. Lastly, I'll have to note that this school can get very competitive. I can ensure you that no matter how hard you're trying, there's always going to be someone who is aiming for the same goal as you. So be prepared to give it your all whether you're on a sports team, class, or extracurricular. It's important to stand out among the students in your grade.
Tech is a school for kids who are outgoing, inquisitive, and confident. (Brains, of course, are a prerequisite.) My daughter came to Tech after 10 years an elite private school. She loved her old school, but was ready was ready to jump into the deep end and meet kids from different backgrounds. My daughter has successfully learned to navigate a completely new landscape of challenges in just one semester. She has many friends-both locally and across the city. The key for her, as it is for many at Tech, is to find your niche (in her case a team, but it can be a club, student government, the play, etc.) and then your chance to meet new kids expands exponentially. Another key to success is for the parent and student to be fearless advocates: Nobody reached out to us in the summer regarding music options, but I determined who headed the Jazz Band at Tech, reached out to him, and made sure he and my daughter conversed in August so that she would be placed in Jazz Band on day 1. This year the Parent-Teacher Association has spearheaded greater outreach and fund-raising, and the trajectory of the school is surely on the rise. My daughter's 1st choice - and a happy one for our family.
if you want your child be "lost" for life take him/her to brooklyn tech. I had my child excellent in gifted and talented programs, once joined Brookyn tech my child learned all bad habitats you wont wish for anybody. schol does not care and does not give a heck.
I attended BTHS from 2005-2009 and I definitely do not regret choosing Tech. It's the place where you want to send your kid if you want them to both learn both academics and street smarts. To me, it was a great school with some quirky characteristics and great teachers. For example, the cafeteria is on the 7th floor, so students have to walk up there everyday for lunch. I didn't appreciate that until I entered college, didn't change my diet, but still gained 10% of my overall weight because I was taking the elevator everyday instead of walking up stairs. I never had a bad teacher at Tech. All of mine were pretty good. Some were easy-going and some were tough, but they all taught well. I learned a lot from them. No one babies you. I never had a grade I thought was truly unfair. There's no class that's a free 90+. Even gym class requires effort. Yes, it is possible to fail gym class... It should be up to the student to push themselves to work harder. You need to earn those grades! It's true that large class sizes can be difficult to deal with, but you know, a college chemistry class can have over 200 students alone. Think of it as prepping them for college.
I attended BTHS 34 years ago; my son attends now. It was a rigorous schedule then as it is now and was concerned how my son would adapt to it. It is taking some time for him, coming from a small elementary and middle school where teachers were very informal. Regardless of the rigor he is loving it and I am confident he wil succeed. From my personal experience BTHS continues to be an elite NYC public HS. It has trained me through school and work and helped me persevere when challenged in college or in my profession. It continues to be there for me through a strong alumni assocition. Hopefully I can give back to BTHS as much as I have received.
Attended Tech when there were 6000 students. Same great school now with the student population again growing towards that number thanks to a great principal and great teachers. If you can pass the entrance exam, you should be attending Tech! I played sports and did many other activities while at Tech!