Used to teach here. Classes are devoted to passing the Texas state tests. Little academic preparation beyond that. Some students go to UT and A&M due to Texas' top 10% law, yet few few survive. A minuscule minority go to prestigious schools thanks to affirmative action and similar programs, largely because non-Laredoan/TAMIU teachers push them and write rec. letters. Counselors do a terrible job, have no knowledge of college admissions standards, ask for rec. letters the day before they are due,etc... The students successful at gaining admittance to real colleges use the counselor at the local private school due to UISD's limited ability.
As a teacher on this campus, I can attest to the fact that our faculty works for goals of excellence that include long hours of planning and tutoring and trying. The teachers are dedicated and able to make the changes for more successes. We need more parental involvement and a way to bring parents into the support of academics , but it is difficult when most of our population is the first to graduate high school and certaintly the first to go to college. We do, however, have a very effective college prep program that is getting more students to college and universities beyond our most hopeful dreams.
School culture is positive. Very hard working administrative team, most teachers are veterans, some first year but limited. Counseling staff promotes AP program, pursues college admissions and scholarship applications vigorously. Special Education department is extremely proactive. Students are well behaved and community service oriented. School receives many compliments on their behavior when they travel, attend conferences or competitions. Drugs and violence are not rampant, however there is a strict zero tolerance policy and administrators do not turn a blind eye. Those students who break the rules will receive just consequences. Many extra curricular activities available.
United South High School provided my child with the best possible fundimentals possible- He graduated as a AP- DAP graduate and left with many accomplishments thanks to the staff at United South- My son now attends Brown University and is doing wonderful in which he thanks most of his teachers for the preperation. If you see alot of great dissmisal of this high school- Do Not pay attention- Visit the school first hand= Most comments are from people in the city who just go by 'reputation'. Times have changed just as people and staff.
Lots of crime, dismal academics,many inexperienced teachers, administration bullies the teachers and is constantly dealing with problem students
Well all I have to say is that I know students from this high school who are at or got into Harvard, Georgetown, Brown, UT, Stanford, Notre Dame, Texas A&M, USC, UCLA, UofH, Princeton, and more of those prestigious schools. So don't be turned off by the bad ratings you see on this page. This high school has a great staff and administration; if the school kids are bad and their scores as well then it's the parents' and the kid's faults. They're the ones who don't pay attention or put in any effort into doing anything. Let me tell you that those who do they make it big.
I'm a former student, I believe that United South High School is a great school. I now appreaciate all the help my teachers gave me. If it wasn't for them I would have not been prepared for Texas A&M University.
When I moved to Texas, USHS was the first school I attended. It was very disappointing that this school could not provide textbooks to students due to tax money problems! I couldn't understand/believe why we didn't have textbooks. Another issue were advisors, she couldn't 'advise' me with college choices. I had to figure everything on my own without any guidance what so ever. Oh can't forget the drug issues...too much drug trafficing in this school (teachers knew who they were) but then again its a border town.
This school has problems. State test scores are abysmal, as are SAT scores. No books are given to students unless parents specifically request them (most don't).
I wonder about this school. Children are not given textbooks to take home, and never have homework. Some classes are conducted in Spanish. How can they learn English better this way? The school has had armed sherriff's deputies in the halls at the end of the semester to prevent gang fights. One day there were kids with baseball bats at the front gate at the end of the school day, and there are always police there.
Not a great school. Unlike every other school I've heard of or experienced, students aren't provided with books to take home unless parents specifically request one. Consequently very little homework is given, with predicatble results when students get to college. Lots of pregnancy, gang activity, drugs. New principals every year or two. Almost all teachers are locals and graduates of less-than-distinguished local college,so little intellectual diversity.
As a former student of USHS I have no complaints. I am very proud to have graduated from this school and am happy to say that they did prepare me for what I am now, a teacher. It disappoints me to hear about all the negative things from parents and other students from this school. As a teacher now I realize that education does start at home. Parents if you think the school needs improvement then it does, but do something about it. Be a parent volunteer and get involved with your student and their school. Remember that it takes a community to raise a child. One person can't make a difference, but everyone together can. And about the gangs, drugs, and everything else let me tell you it's everywhere. We can't runaway from it, but we do need to face the reality of it. Go Panthers!
Iam proud to say that I go to this school were I successed in all my subjects.
I recently graduated at the top of my class from this school. I attended the magnet program and, at the time, thought I was getting a decent education. Now, I'm at UT, and find that everyone else had trig at their high school, and it wasn't even an option at USHS. My UT classmates had a number of science and math classes in HS that I would have jumped at if they were only offered. I had one or two decent teachers, but they weren't from Laredo, and now they are gone. Also, none of my classmates passed a single AP test outside of spanish. I can only hope that my kids go somwhere better than USHS.
I have worked at this school, other schools, and currently teach in the education department of a northeastern state university. My fellow faculty members here are aghast at the student academic performance, the emphasis on state tests at the expense of college preparation, and adminstration/teacher turnover, as well as the acceptance of student behavior that all too often crosses the line into criminality. Add this to the rates of drug use (often on campus), gang membership, pregnancy, and the real 'noncompletion' (read droput) rate, and one sees how the school loves to play up the very few that go onto elite colleges. I have taught some of these children, and they are not the norm. There are some fine, dedicated faculty at this school, but the administration uses the economic status of the students as an excuse for general academic achievement that is sub-mediocre.
I am a proud parent of a junior at this school. I can honestly say this a great school and has recently been under great control. My daughter has been doing excellent and is at the top of her class. I get very distracted when other parents say it is an awful school and critic the administration. Lately, I can say they have been doing a spectacular job. They want the best for the students. They have been pursuing the best for the student s sake. The offer tutorials and extra learning programs aside of class. They really work hard to help our children learn. The school also has a great sports program. With this, the students want to do even better in class so they can be able to be a part of their sport.
I am not a parent but a student of this high school. I have read the comments posted on this website and yes during the past two years things have been a little chaotic around our campus, but now we have a great staff and an even greater principal. As a student from United South I can tell you that this school not only prepared me for college but also for the future. I am now applying to Harvard, UCLA, and UT. Just to name a few. I know what you must think, I have to grade this school high only because I belong to it, but trust me I don't have to. I love this school and I know I will come back to thank all the administration for their excellent support and help.
Our school is really progressing. Our principle and staff are doing their best to keep us away from gang-related or any fights around campus. We also don't have any dances or movies during class to distract us so us students should also understand that school hours are for learning and not just to have fun.
Private schools are awful, they don't let students interact with other people as well. Therefore, I suggest that the parent which just appointed that United South High School was an awful place for studying, I would say to keep his/her words to themselves, since as a personal parent of a student from United South, I can definitely say that my child, a senior, is an excellent student who is now prepared to leave Laredo to go to one of the best universities in the United States and it is all thanks to the scholarships that she received. So, with all respect I encourage you to watch carefully how our school is advancing.
Awful place for education. Even AP students have low SAT scores(600-800). Lots of crime on and off campus. New principals every couple of years. Most of the decent teachers leave after a couple of years. Much of the class time is wasted on dances, pep rallies, TAAS/TAKS testing, movies, etc. Dropout claims are wildly off the mark. The census states that less than half of this zip code has a HS diploma, yet USHS says that over %95 graduate. Faced with this choice, my child is going to a private high school.
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