I love Ithaca High School, as a student with learning disabilities i find that there is support (even though me and my family had to fight a bit to get some of them) i still find this school to be amazing, if you can survive IHS You can survive anywhere. the new administration is doing a great job and the enviroment encourages learning, creativity, and indivualism. IHS takes as much pride in every aspect, from Photo Class/Club to the Drama Dept. to our Atheltic teams. i recommend this school to anyone and is definitly the best in the area.
The faculty and staff are well-educated, passionate, and they care. The kids are from diverse backgrounds, from all over the world, as well as rural and urban homes. Is it perfect? No, it's a public school - but an excellent one.
I have two kids who graduated from IHS and are now both in college. IHS falls short by not offering vocational education exploration, and vocational internships in conjunction with local businesses - for those students not interested in going to college. For those students, many leave IHS with little or no idea about what to do next. IHS does not prepare all students for the future by offering education about career opportunities and by providing hands-on applicable training programs. IHS does a fine job preparing highly motivated students for college -- that's not the most difficult task.
As the parent of two Ithaca HS graduates it saddens me to realize that with the retirement of a much loved teacher this June, there will be no African-American teachers at IHS next school year. How is it that a school/district that says it cares about diversity has failed to hire/retain black, asian or any teachers of color. This is a high school of 1500+ students from many different backgrounds. It doesn't seem possible that Ithaca High School has come to this. I hope that the district administration will work on what is a very serious problem.
As a white female I have seen the different situations that have occurred. Mr. Wilson needs to relize this isn't a private school and that he needs to treat everyone equal.
I move a lot and I've experienced many different schools. My experience with IHS wasn't as pleasant as my other schools. It seems that this area in particular is focused only on passing the Regents and getting accepted to Cornell. Those without high aspirations for college or any extra curriculars to keep them occupied, go in a detrimental direction in their lives. Something I've witnessed, experienced, and survived. Before my family moved here, I was completely unaware that smoking weed was a popular activity among teenagers. And it was surprising to discover that this was common practice among the average students; not just the few future drop-outs. The students are unmotivated by the school to succeed in education. Even good students who have had a positive upbringing can easily fall victim to the increasing indifference to succeeding among students at IHS.
IHS is a great school for students who fit into the high achievement category and are self-motivated learners. It is not a great school for anyone else. There is weak support from the principal for programs that support the average to below average learner. Our experience at IHS was very negative. Some teachers really did try, but that did not make-up for the undefined curriculum, impersonal staff, and chaotic atmosphere. The drop-out rate is alarmingly high for a school that seems to pride itself on academic achievement. We finally transferred our children to another school and have been astounded at the difference between schools.
The present principal is breaking the cycle of quick administrative turnover. He is supported by most of the stakeholders. If he receives tenure, there will be the vision and accountability to make this good school a great school. The professional development offerings are outstanding.
This is a good school. There are many activities for students to choose from. Also, the teachers are really nice and always want to help.
I believe ithaca high school is not a very encourageing school. Very smart children are ignored and teachers are very unfair and demanding. High school is a tough time for everyone and ithaca high school does not support students like most high schools.
This school's test scores are high, and many of its graduates go to Ivy League schools or equivalent, but that's not the school's doing. Many of the students are Cornell faculty children who get their intellectual education at home. The others, the 'townies', are tracked into vocational programs and, if they have any college interest, get nothing from the poor teaching and lack of activities other than bully-encouraging athletics. The school has had principal turnover almost every year. Due to the school's size it's very easy for even the brightest students to be ignored by the counseling system.
Although there have been many principals within the last 10 years, and there is the usual tension found in ay high school, Ithaca High School continues to be ranked as highly as it is for a good reason. The many options for studnets beyond the plethora of AP's availible such as the WISE program as an alternative for English and the New visions program. For the less academically inclined students, such as my son he found a lot of extra help and teachers generally picked up on it when he needed the help. It is a large school but over all the staff works with the students to ensure no one 'falls through the cracks' and if they do they are promptly caught. Over all it may not be the beacon of enlightenment such as Cornell or IC but it is a remarkable high school. Over 40 clubs for students.
I attended IHS in the early 80s and found it academically challenging and full of electives in all areas. (I took mechanical drafting as an AP student and that was ok). I found the teachers caring and concerned. Has all that changed? I think Ithaca in general is too concerned with being politically correct these days, at the expense of common sense, and that has no doubt carried over to IHS as well. Too bad, but still a far cry better than many public high schools.
Ithaca High School may have good teachers, but the discipline is not up to standard. The school stresses tolerance and political correctness, but racism is alive and well at Ithaca. If ever you want to get lost at a high school, Ithaca is the place to go. My friends hate place, and only go because they have to. They stay far away from Ithaca High School otherwise, and do extracurricular activites through the CSMA.
This is a highly overrated high school that sits in the shadows of Cornell University and Ithaca College. It receives substantial tax payer dollars yet fails to adequately stimulate bright students (of which there are many) nor does it adequately address the needs of students who fall at the other end of the spectrum. It's a political hotbed that is driven by political correctness. The school lacks genuine leadership and vision and it fails to keep a principal for very long. I regret having moved here from State College, PA where my son could have had a higher quality high school experience in a nurturing, caring, and in many ways, a more intellectual environment. What saves this school is the fact that so many children have highly educated parents who value education and take it upon themselves to give their children the life experiences and education they need.
I have two children who attended the Ithaca Schools, Elementary and Middle schools were wonderful, the High School falls into a catagory with many other large schools. A child can and will fall through the cracks if the parents are not completely involved, the academic involvment seems to break down at this level. School fights are a common occurrence and student safety is a major concern. Teachers are affaid to discipline due to fear. I have removed my high school students from Ithaca High School for this reason.
My daughter's life has changed since she enrolled at IHS from a private school. She is not only allowed, but encouraged to explore and express her own beliefs and feelings about herself and her world. She loves school now, and is excited about college. Her grades have improved...and she is stimulated by the diversity offered at Ithaca High School. Thank you staff!
Community ratings and reviews do not represent the views of GreatSchools nor does GreatSchools check their accuracy or verify the reviewers' identities. Use your discretion when evaluating these reviews.
To start a new list, click OK. Otherwise click Cancel.
Thank you! You will begin to receive newsletters from us shortly.
Thanks for verifying your updated email address.
Oops! That email verification link has expired. Please click the button below to receive a new one.
Create an account to submit your answers.
Sign in with an existing GreatSchools account or using Facebook:
Your review has been posted to GreatSchools.
Share with friends! Post your opinion of Ithaca Senior High School on Facebook.
Welcome to GreatSchools!
Thanks! We just sent you an email – please click on the link in the email to post your answers.
Get timely updates for Ithaca Senior High School, including performance data and recently posted user reviews.