Townsend Harris High School is filled with pompous teachers with little regard for their students. Teachers at Townsend Harris High School overload the students under the disguise of "getting students college ready" (practically drill this message into the student's head!). NEWS FLASH- The students prior to entering THHS are super responsible, very bright, greatly value education and are already college minded. Overloading the students with extreme unnecessary amounts of work that keeps them up all night is not getting them college ready, it's only getting them overwhelmed and anxious.This dumping process of an overload of work begins in ninth grade and gets no better through the years .The Townsend Harris High School's prestigious name is the truest testament to the students who attend, and not by the disinterested teachers. Good teachers at THHS are few and far between; like finding a needle in a haystack. If the students from THHS gathered together and attended another school, than that school would also be considered a prestigious school. Students who truly value education are the greatest contributors for high ratings. Demanding and unhelpful teachers at THHS take advantage of this integrity held by their students. "Organizing your time" is another cliché school uses. The fact is, there's just not enough time in the day to get all the work done, and that's why students are up all night completing it! That shows no respect or value for students. Also, because of the extreme workload, THHS students do not have the same time as students from other schools have in order to help prepare for the PSAT/SAT exams. This puts THHS students at a huge disadvantage from being accepted into Ivy League colleges because they're too busy catching up with an enormous amount of homework, no time for anything else. Other schools throughout area have students attend Ivy League schools without dumping endless work on them, but through the help and care from thoughtful teachers/staff. Townsend Harris students deserve so much more in way of a helpful, caring, thoughtful quality educational environment rather than a non helping, careless, and thoughtless quantity amount of educational environment that's being offered. Before long, the school's reputation will be of one that takes advantage of the integrity of its students. Lighten up the load, Townsend Harris High School and also help and respect the students who make this school a top school.
My daughter (a freshman) was a little nervous about attending this school but I must say, she is loving it. Yes, there are days that the homework is a bit much but she is handling it well. She made the JV Volleyball team and has joined a couple of clubs. It's definitely a well rounded school.
Honestly, while attending this school, I hated it with every fiber of my being; to this day, I can't say that the time I spent at THHS was great. This school caused me a lot of mental and physical anguish. Though, reflecting upon my high school years, I now see that Townsend really is out to do good and help students really get somewhere in life. Many people complain about the boot camp-like gym classes, but they train you to be very fit and healthy, which most other schools don't bother to accomplish. Also, THHS had such a caring and welcoming environment (concerning other students). Besides a few rare occurrences, I have never heard of bullying or fights. Everyone seemed to be, for the most part, one big family. While the teachers are a hit or miss, a lot of the good ones are exceptional. When this school says they're preparing you for college, they aren't kidding. After graduating, I can honestly say I'm glad I went to this school. Note to incoming or current students: yes, THHS may seem like an absolute horror, but do try to make the best of it. It's a great school for a reason; while they seem to care about their reputation A LOT, they do also have your future in mind.
For those of complaining about gym, I honestly have to say that while it might seem ridiculous or pointless, in the long run, the benefits outweigh the cons. Honestly, all health and gym classes are taught by excellent teachers. You literally get all tools necessary for living healthy and you can carry this on to college. As a freshmen I had trouble running a mere mile, a testimony to my inactivity. As a senior, I took a body sculpting class where I learned how to use weights and as a result I became fit. Even now running a mile is an easy feat, showing my cardiovascular fitness. Its good to know that the school will take care of your mind and body. What many adults pay for personal fitness trainers, we get the knowledge for free. As for the running outside in the cold, honestly, it isn't that bad and in retrospect, it probably helped strengthen me too.
Mixed feelings about this school. No doubt it is one of the best high schools in NYC. As a parent of a graduated students, I noticed that there are a lot of rooms for improvement. The main job that they need to do is to find out why a national ranked 33rd high school have such low percentage of students accepted by ivy caliber schools. For the past few years, the number of students accepted by ivy calibers were under 10%. Whereas in Stuy, it was about 25%. For a class of about 270 kids, only 4 got accepted to Cornell on an average. Jericho High School in Long Island, which has similar class size, have 20+ kids got into Cornell. Why? That's a big question that Townsend needs to find out! Below are pros and cons: Pros: 1. Push the kids to their limit leads to better prepared for college. 2. Great friendly atmosphere for learning and making good life time friends. Cons: 1. Too much running for gym. 2. College counselors were inexperience that leads to large amount of smart kids NOT getting into Ivy League colleges. 3. Teachers gave out lousy grades. All classes are honors but they don't weight the grades. This also leads to students denied by large amount of top selective colleges.