I graduated from Lincoln High School back in 2003. Compared with other schools in Portland, Lincoln provides a decent education. However, it does not prepare Ivy League-bound students particularly well for the challenges that face them in college. I was easily able to earn A's completing my work at the very last minute, and the writing instruction was quite poor. My senior year, I was not required to write any papers. What I did turn in earned A's, when it was probably C- or B-quality work. College-bound students need a huge amount of writing practice, and honest feedback, and Lincoln did not provide this.
I am a junior here, and these are my thoughts about my experience at Lincoln:
Constitution Team program is one of the best in the nation. Cross Country program is amazing with wonderful coaches and students. School identity and spirit is very strong. Principal Chapman is easily the most caring, hard-working, and active administrator I have ever met, and she truly has a vision for the school that she actively pursues. The IB program is incredible, with really engaging and challenging classes and passionate teachers. Most importantly, connections to the surrounding city abound, creating unique and enriching opportunities for all types of students. For those who are so inclined, opportunities for leadership are plentiful and highly supported. I would recommend this school to anyone.
We transferred from out of state & both my kids much prefer Lincoln to their last school. Although there are cliques, for the most part they are very tolerant of the differences between the groups (respecting the right to do your own thing.) Racism is not cool and being smart is considered a good thing here. This is not a football-centric school with about every sport you can think of but except for the basics of football, basketball etc... all the other sports are club and funded by parents. The principal is very proactive but suffers under the bureaucracy of Portland Public Schools which has a pretty poor track record. If your child is exceptionally smart, they are going to be really bored until they can take IB classes (Soph or Jr. year depending on class) as there are no honors classes (district's gifted program is a sham.) School facility is dilapidated & not good for asthma sufferers. Tons of opportunities for enrichment with clubs, internships and competitions many driven by the parents involvement. Teachers vary but are mostly well intentioned but seem overworked. Given their limitations, Lincoln does a lot with a little (really 4.5 stars)
After my first year at Lincoln high, I have discovered that teachers are very hands-off and classes are difficult. There are no AP classes but there is an abundance of IB classes; going for the IB diploma is near impossible. The students are very egotistical and remain in cliques. I am getting a good education, however the stress of the classes, snooty students, cliques, and teachers with loss of passion-has left me to attend Wilson High. Lincoln does have its pros such as the open campus, large cultural diversity, and free periods. Nobody dares to ridicule someone who is gay/lesbian or white/black/Asian ect: but if someone dresses not "Portland" like: people mock. There is very little parking so everyone takes Public transportation. The nearest bus stop is 2 miles away from my house and the only way to walk to it is by walking alongside a major road. The school is currently 160% over-populated. Nobody eats in the cafeteria since it is small; most people eat in the halls and bring lawn chairs. (only the juniors and seniors bring lawn chairs and sophomores and freshman do not, it's an unspoken rule). It is inconvenient and I just walk to the food carts or subway for lunch instead.
I am an alum from Class of 1996 who completed the full-International Baccalaureate program at Lincoln. The teachers were great, the work was engaging, and I thought the school did a good job having a variety of extra-curriculars to join. A lot of my classes were structured based on the IB-curriculum (which involved extensive writing) so I am biased in that way. Instead of just memorizing multiple-choice answers, the program develops critical thinking and explores ways of thinking and of creating techniques to analyze works. It was a solid foundation and prepared me well for the ivy leave college I went on to after graduating.
My son transferred from Wilson High School to Lincoln High School for his sophomore year and was back at Wilson the next year. The staff at Lincoln was not the same as Wilsons. The teachers at Lincoln obviously only care about their IB students and are stuck up and very bureaucratic. I felt like Lincoln did not care about my son and were honestly quite mean to him at times. He couldn't even talk to his guidance councilor without feeling ridiculed for not liking it there. I would not recomend this school to anyone.
I am currently a freshman at Lincoln, and even though it's only been only 4 weeks, it's an outstanding school! There's so positive feedback about this school. Every single teacher in this school are very generous, the sports and after-school clubs are amazing, and there are like, absolutely no clique or bully problems AT ALL! Every student in this school are very nice and like to kid around with you. Even though the class sizes are HUGE (for example, 25-40 kids a class, 50-60 kids in a PE class, and about 75 in the Concert Band class), LHS still has great education and helps the kids grow into mini adults. The after-school clubs are so fun. Also, Lincoln offers off campus lunch, and there are tons of places to go to, including Starbucks, McDonald's, and many other places. I highly recommend this school to anybody who can go. Go Cardinals!!!!!!!!!!
I absolutely love this school. Great education, lots of fun extracurricular activities (such as sports and after-school clubs), and very nice kids with not that many cliques around the school. The IB Program is excellent. This school helped me turn into a young adult, and helped the other kids as well. This is just the best school ever.