Sending a child from a small private elementary school to Allderdice for high school was a scary option. My child will be entering 11th grade, we looked at four other private schools and three other public schools in the city and are thrilled that we made the decision to go to Allderdice. The CAS "gifted" program is challenging and rigorous. The first 6 months in 9th grade are tough because they pile on homework, projects and tests. However, once your child gets used to the routine, they figure out how to best study and it gets easier and my child is very happy there. I like the fact that there are several projects in the first year and that they focus both on academic and service achievements. The service projects that the 9th grade class presented are pretty amazing. Yes as other reviews have mentioned it’s an old building but not everything in life is pristine. If you want a nice clean building with modern facilities then chose private school. I would prefer that my child has real life experiences while living at home rather than have them for the first time at college. I like the fact that there is a lot of diversity, many extracurricular activities and a great sense of school pride. Like any other school there are excellent teachers and teachers that are only fair. The school counselor's work with your child to develop an individual educational plan. Everything that you need for a good education is there but it is up to the child to seek it out. This school will teach your child to be an independent learner and adult. If you are a motivated student it will take you where you want to go. If you are not motivated then there are a lot of distractions.
This school offers many different types of curriculum, a large variety of extracurricular activites. For advanced students curriculum is really good. Special needs students not so good. The building itself rather dismal and dark. First floor during class change is rather scary. Lots and lots of cursing, screaming and unruly teens. If you are a parent and need to visit building, get a bell schedule to avoid complete chaos at class change. From what I hear Allderdice is a paradise compared to other high schools within the district. For the most part it is what it is, not the greatest, not the worst.
Allderdice has great variety. Students can take classes in all different levels of difficulty. The CAS (gifted) program is terrific for gifted students. Students can also take classes at other levels, but they probably won't learn as much. The school is safe despite its reputation for violence, and a student with any level of street smarts will be fine. The school is dirty and in disrepair. Still, it's almost charming how old-school it is, with slate chalkboards and chipping paint. There are a plethora of extracurriculars and there is truly something for everyone to do outside of school. The diversity at Allderdice is truly unique. There is both handfulls of students who go to Ivy League or top ranked universities and a >10% dropout rate. Allderdice gets bad press it doesn't deserve and truly is a great school. Give it a chance and I think you will find it is a good place.
The school has excellent high level classes, and with any serious degree of studiousness and drive students can earn(and many have) acceptance to top level ivy league universities. You get out of it what you put in. It is true that the building itself is in some degree of disrepair and is relatively unclean, there still is the opportunity of a truly great education.
This school is all hype, smoke and mirrors. As i figured, the school over-inflates their college attendance numbers to make the academics sound better then they really are. My daughter goes there, against my wishes and exactly as I expected happened. She thought it was really cool and hip. But now it's ime to go to college and she is not prepared. And try to talk to one of the teachers. They just blow you off.
The best public school in Pittsburgh. The best students go to Ivy League colleges. You can choose to do no work at all and still pass-- or you can take advantage of the highest level classes and earn a place in the best universities. You can excell if you want to, and surround yourself with like-mnded students. I would not be afraid to send my child here and I would save myself from paying for private school. The key is to take the hardest classes.