Advertisement
Advertisement

GreatSchools Rating

Central High School

Public | 9-12 | 2360 students

 

Be sure to visit

Take along one of
our checklists:

 
Last modified
Community Rating

5 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
Based on 3 ratings
2013:
Based on 3 ratings
2012:
Based on 2 ratings
2011:
Based on 5 ratings

Teacher quality

Principal leadership

Parent involvement

Rate this school

Click on stars to rate
Please select a star rating for this school.
    Helpful reviews answer questions:
  • What do you think others should know?
  • What do you like?
  • How could your school improve?
    Review Guidelines
    GreatSchools won’t post reviews that contain:
  • Inappropriate language
  • Allegations of criminal conduct
  • Names of students, teachers or staff
1200 characters remaining
Please read and accept our Terms of Use to join GreatSchools.
Please indicate your relationship to the school.
Registration is required to post your anonymous review
We will not display your name, photo or email address with your review.
OR
Your email address will never be published or shared.
Indicates a required field

82 reviews of this school


Sort by:
Show reviews by:
Posted September 20, 2007

One thing I find most advantageous about having attended Central HS is the school's rich diversity and cosmopolitan atmosphere. Few schools in Philadelphia, or elsewhere in America, have a student body as ethnically and socio-economically diverse as that which Central HS has maintained for decades. The diversity really enhances the learning environment, as reflected in the diversity of Central's foreign language curriculum--which offers a variety of non-traditional languages including Hebrew, Russian, and Chinese. I took Chinese all four years at Central, and continued studying the language at college. Eight years later and nearly fluent in Chinese, people are always surprised to learn that I am a Chinese-speaking Hispanic-American. When they hear I began learning Chinese at my high school they always say: 'Your high school offered Chinese? You must have went to a really good high school!'
—Submitted by a student


Posted September 13, 2007

I just graduated from central 266. 99% of my class is attending college. Its a great school and has prepared me well for Drexel. Just the reputation of Central alone opens a gateway to great things!
—Submitted by a student


Posted August 19, 2007

My son has just completed his Freshman year at Central High School. The growth that I see in him both verbally and interpersonally is very apparent. I am extremely pleased with Central High School.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 16, 2007

I am a graduate of Central's class of 262(2003, for those not familiar with Central) and can't begin to describe how attending there both changed and enriched my life in countless ways. Central somehow combines rigorous & demanding academics with a fun and exciting social experience, which is almost impossible to find in a high school. It also educates a huge number of different nationalities, cultures, and even countries. And amazingly, everyone gets along! The teachers, classes, and the principal are amazing, as is the relationship between teachers and students, due to the mutual respect that exists between them. When you become part of a class at Central, you gain a family that will be a part of you for the rest of your life. As the school song says, 'Dear high, dear Central High, thy mem'ries never die'.
—Submitted by a student


Posted June 28, 2007

My daughter graduated June 15, 2007, from Central High. If you have the opportunity to attend Central, take that chance. I have never been so proud of a collective group of individuals in my life. the Class of 266 was of the hook!!!! I was not only overwhelmed by my daughter's personal sucess, but I stayed on my feet through the entire graduation ceremony for each and every one of those amazing students. There were well over 25 million dollars in scholarships earned by these wonderful students of 266! My daughter received a Certificate of Distiguishment, among other awards,for scoring above Advanced in Math, Reading and Writing every year consecutively on her PSSA. She also scored an 1850 on her SAT. She would never had been able to achieve all of this without Central's assistance!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 10, 2007

Excellent scholastic record offers MG & AP courses, students able to take courses at neighboring LaSalle University. Has both a strong and active Alumni association and a Home and School association. The Alumni Association recently constructed a multi-million dollar library and research complex. Central's Home and School has pledged several thousand dollars to the school for computer, art and science supplies. Hold Annual Women's Career Day, and an Annual Career Day, offering the student body access to numerous Alumni who work in a field of interest to the students. Social Studies program on the electoral process brought the Mayoral Primary election candidates to the school for a forum broadcast statewide. Has a strong athletics department, defending league titles in Baseball and softball, Girls basketball has 93 straight wins in Public league competition and 6 consecutive league championships. Internationally acclaimed orchestra, traveling to Eastern Europe this summer. Drama society which holds annual productions.
—Submitted by a former student


Posted March 7, 2007

I would like to add a comment about the teacher quality at Central. I feel that people think that the teachers dont care about the students and that they dont pay attention to the student when this is very not true. The Central teachers are some of the finest teachers in the city. Many of these teachers could easily get a job at a higher paying school in the suburbs. Central students have no idea how lucky they are to have such talent at their disposal. I think that the reason that many Central students feel like the teachers dont pay attention to them is because Central teaches in a college-like fasion. Almost all of the teachers that I have spoken to warned me about this before hand and I completely agree with the method. It readies the students for their future. These students won't be babied in College.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted February 26, 2007

I agree with many of the previous postings, with one caveat. Central is an excellent choice if your son or daughter is already academically confident, highly-motivated and an excellent student or athlete. S/he will thrive at Central. My daughter---a senior--is finally achieving her potential in small and/or AP classes with good-to-great teachers. Her first three years were less successful and she struggled with academic, racial and social issues. Her teachers were not responsive and/or attentive (and some really just need to retire). If I had the choice, I would not choose Central for her again but would select a smaller, more supportive environment where she could develop relationships with her teachers earlier and have less distractions. There is also limited parental involvement, since students come from all over the city. I felt very dis-engaged from her high school process because of the school's location, size and geographic spread.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted January 23, 2007

Central's students serve as a big motivation to each other, and this is speaking from experience. Even when I look back I realized how much harder I work compared to previous years. The school is really diverse and though we have our own little groups, everyone is always welcome; nobody is left out. The opportunities here are really great, and some people just take it for granted. Get in Central if you can!! It's awesome
—Submitted by a student


Posted January 3, 2007

Central rocks! As a cross country and a track athlete and a captain of 2 clubs I was pleased with the many opportunities I was provided with in the high school. Of course my highlight was biomedical research program which will drive my future and gave me some money in the form of prestigious science fair awards. Academically, your typical yardstick measures: SAT's range from 900 to 1600, myself 1460; AP's go from 1 to 5, myself a recipient of numerous 5's. The class ranking is vicious and is so competitive that a difference between the top 40 people can be 0.1 points. Heck with all this I landed myself at UPENN and my buddies at every Ivy in the country and some who went to employment. But you need to discover these opportunities because no one will give them to you. Graduates are everywhere in the world.
—Submitted by a former student


Posted December 2, 2006

My son is a freshman at Central. As a parent, I am extremely pleased with the level and content of the instruction. I love the diversity of the school, for this will assist in the further development of his interpersonal skills. The teachers are very responsive, and the website is very informative. I am particularly proud of the student athletes at Central, for in addition to attending practice, they must have a higher GPA than the PIAA requires. With Central it is strictly academics first. We had options to attend most of the best schools in the area, but we choose Central, and I am so glad we did. Best wishes to '269.'
—Submitted by a parent


Posted October 10, 2006

As a parent of a 2004 Central grad, I can only say positive things about my son's experience there. It is an environment which will never be matched again for him in his lifetime. Of course, academically, it is superior, but what Central has that other private and public schools don't have is a very diverse student population with students from virtually all corners of the globe. These students are exceptional in so many ways that I cannot begin to list them. They learn the most from each other. This provides an education that cannot be obtained in suburbia. I am very happy that my son will take that with him throughout his life.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 26, 2006

Central is an awesome school! I love it!! The teachers are great and so are the classes. Anyone would be lucky to come here.
—Submitted by a student


Posted August 26, 2006

this school is really bad and is not safe. the teachers teach nothing
—Submitted by a parent


Posted July 25, 2006

I'm a member of the 265th graduating class the latest products of a magnificent place (and i must add the best so far). If its the indise scoop you want on this place a senior or a leving senior would be the best person to ask. Central is many things to everybody but never the same thing to every one person. To me central was a home, a pratice grounds, but more inportantly central was my life. I loved that school i mean it was soo much fu and the teachers were great the cultural aspects were unbelievable and the education provided is unmatched. The most important thing i garnished from central after running the freshman orientation since sophmore year was the fact that life and oppirtunities are always present. And it was central that taught me to reach out and grab them.
—Submitted by a former student


Posted June 10, 2006

The best high school in Philadelphia. The academic program is top notch, the alumni and parents are both active and the administration is caring and stable. The music program is world class and there are literally more clubs than you can imagine.
—Submitted by a former student


Posted May 29, 2006

This is the absolute best public magnet school in Philadelphia. This is a diverse community where the students and staff share the common goal of learning. Excellent choice !
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 28, 2006

I have found that my experience at Central High school has been rewarding thus far. I am Honored that my daughter was accepted to go to this school and will have a top notch education
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 5, 2006

Amazing, this school is absoulutly outstanding. I have learned soo much, it is incredibale
—Submitted by a student


Posted March 22, 2006

This was an excellent high school to go to. The quality of the education and classes were so excellent. Unfortunately a lot of this is not realized until leaving Central and talking to other kids who went to other schools. Also the level and accessability of extracurriculars is amazing. Students are able to make their own group as long as they can find 4 students to join it, and find a teacher to sponser it. This allows the students to be in a group with other students with similar interests. Parent involvement is very high also. As an education major now, you realize exactly how much parents have to do with the success of their children. Without parental involvement Central would definitely not be the same. Keep up the good work good ole CHS! :) -Class of 262 (2003)
—Submitted by a former student


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.

About these ratings

The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.

The test results by subgroup show how the designated group of students is performing in comparison to the general population.

Grade level

Math

The state average for Math was 60% in 2012.

620 students were tested at this school in 2012.

2012

 
 
97%

2011

 
 
98%

2010

 
 
98%

2009

 
 
98%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 68% in 2012.

620 students were tested at this school in 2012.

2012

 
 
97%

2011

 
 
99%

2010

 
 
98%

2009

 
 
98%
Science

The state average for Science was 42% in 2012.

606 students were tested at this school in 2012.

2012

 
 
73%

2011

 
 
81%

2010

 
 
84%

2009

 
 
82%
Writing

The state average for Writing was 83% in 2012.

607 students were tested at this school in 2012.

2012

 
 
100%

2011

 
 
99%

2010

 
 
98%

2009

 
 
100%
Scale: % at or above proficient

About the tests


In 2011-2012 Pennsylvania used the Pennsylvania System of State Assessments (PSSA) to test students in grades 3 through 8 and 11 in math and reading, in grades 5, 8 and 11 in writing, and in grades 4, 8 and 11 in science. The results for reading, writing, science and math are displayed on GreatSchools profiles. The PSSA is a standards-based test, which means it measures how well students are mastering specific skills defined for each grade by the state of Pennsylvania. The goal is for all students to score at or above proficient on the test.

Source: Pennsylvania Department of Education

Math

All Students97%
Female97%
Male98%
Black94%
Asian100%
Hispanic95%
Multi-ethnic92%
White99%
Economically disadvantaged98%
Students with disabilities (IEP)n/a
English language learnersn/a

Reading

All Students97%
Female98%
Male95%
Black97%
Asian98%
Hispanic93%
Multi-ethnic92%
White97%
Economically disadvantaged96%
Students with disabilities (IEP)n/a
English language learnersn/a

Science

All Students73%
Female70%
Male77%
Black63%
Asian76%
Hispanic61%
Multi-ethnic69%
White86%
Economically disadvantaged71%
Students with disabilities (IEP)n/a
English language learnersn/a

Writing

All Students100%
Female99%
Male100%
Black99%
Asian100%
Hispanic100%
Multi-ethnic100%
White100%
Economically disadvantaged99%
Students with disabilities (IEP)n/a
English language learnersn/a
Scale: % at or above proficient

About the tests


In 2011-2012 Pennsylvania used the Pennsylvania System of State Assessments (PSSA) to test students in grades 3 through 8 and 11 in math and reading, in grades 5, 8 and 11 in writing, and in grades 4, 8 and 11 in science. The results for reading, writing, science and math are displayed on GreatSchools profiles. The PSSA is a standards-based test, which means it measures how well students are mastering specific skills defined for each grade by the state of Pennsylvania. The goal is for all students to score at or above proficient on the test.

The different student groups are identified by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. If there are fewer than 10 students in a particular group in a school, the state doesn't report data for that group.

Source: Pennsylvania Department of Education

Breaking down the GreatSchools Rating

GreatSchools Ratings for this school are based on 2011-2012 test results. Use the breakdown ratings below to compare types of students at this school. Learn more »


Student ethnicity

Ethnicity This school State average
Black 33% 15%
Asian or Asian/Pacific Islander 31% 3%
White 27% 71%
Hispanic 8% 9%
Two or more races 3% 2%
American Indian/Alaska Native 0% 0%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 0% 0%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

Teacher resources

Special staff resources available to students School social worker/counselors(s)
College counselor(s)
Read more about programs at this school
Source: Provided by school officials and community members.

Let your school shine!

School leaders: Help your school shine on GreatSchools
by verifying community responses, adding program highlights
and more! Get started »

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM)

Visual arts
  • Architecture

Arts & music

School facilities
  • Art room
  • Music room
  • Performance stage
Visual arts
  • Architecture
  • Photography
Music
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing and written arts
  • Drama
Media arts
  • Graphics

Language learning

Foreign languages taught
  • American sign language
  • French
  • Italian
  • Spanish

Health & athletics

School facilities
  • Access to sports fields
  • Kitchen
Note: Data provided by school administrators and community.
School leaders, update and verify information here.

Let your school shine!

School leaders: Help your school shine on GreatSchools
by verifying community responses, adding program highlights
and more! Get started »

School basics

Before school or after school care / program onsite
  • After school

Programs

Foreign languages taught
  • American sign language
  • French
  • Italian
  • Spanish

Resources

Staff resources available to students
  • College counselor(s)
  • School social worker/counselors(s)
Extra learning resources offered
  • Title I Schoolwide program (SWP)
Transportation options
  • Buses/vans for students only
  • Passes/tokens for public transportation
School facilities
  • Access to sports fields
  • Art room
  • Auditorium
  • Cafeteria
  • Kitchen
  • Library
  • Music room
  • Performance stage
Note: Data provided by school administrators and community.
School leaders, update and verify information here.

Let your school shine!

School leaders: Help your school shine on GreatSchools
by verifying community responses, adding program highlights
and more! Get started »

Sports

Boys sports
  • Cheerleading
  • Football
Girls sports
  • Basketball
  • Cheerleading

Arts & music

Visual arts
  • Architecture
  • Photography
Music
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing arts
  • Drama
Media arts
  • Graphics
Note: Data provided by school administrators and community.
School leaders, update and verify information here.

Upcoming Events

No upcoming events found for this school
Searching for school events...
Date
Title
  • {{date}}
    {{title}}
Export calendar
Outlook.com
Microsoft Outlook
iCal Format
Google Calendar
Print Calendar
Uploading, please wait...
POWERED BY
Tandem

School culture

Parent involvement
  • Volunteer in the classroom
Note: Data provided by school administrators and community.
School leaders, update and verify information here.

Apply

To learn more about enrolling, please call the school.
 

TIP: Don't forget to ask about documents required for enrollment, such as your child's birth certificate, proof of address, or a record of immunizations.

 
Notice an inaccuracy? Let us know!

1700 West Olney Ave
Philadelphia, PA 19141
Phone: (215) 276-5262

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Compare this school
to nearby schools

Compare schools »

Compare

Add this school to compare

Nearby schools

Widener Memorial School
Philadelphia, PA


Girls High School
Philadelphia, PA





Better Way Academy
Philadelphia, PA


ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT