Langley consists of kids who think they are entitled and don't interact outside their cliques. Take the example of the person who gave a five star review below my review. She basically put down those who gave Langley a one star review. It is likely that she is one of the kids in the "inner circle." So while Langley might be good for her, it is not good for the average kid who works hard but is not exactly at the top of the class. Every kid at this school believes he or she is the best. Life is not like that. People are not able to interact with people of all levels and races. The house prices in the area ensure that the kids going to Langley are really wealthy. There is no cultural diversity. Life does not revolve around wealthy people. While Langley academics are really tough, its tough to break in socially. This school is for the wealthy and brilliant. If you belong in that category, Langley would good. But if you are smart (not brilliant) and work hard and try and talk to people but are not ridiculously social (which is how most high school are), then don't go to Langley. Going to this school also makes it tough to get in a good college if you are a regular student.
Langley is awesome. School spirit is great, unless you are one of the kids who wants to protest all of the school spirit because you hate the people leading the school, which is pretty much all of the people giving it negative reviews. People go wild at the big football and basketball games and for any sports against McLean, the rival school, and the kids in leadership work extremely hard to make the pep rallies and spirit weeks and everything else to do with spirit enjoyable for all of the school. There's a lot of stress in academics, but it prepares you well for college so no one should be complaining. All the sports teams are good and the school produces athletic and academic prodigies each year. I go here and I don't think it gets much better as far as public schools go. Yeah there are cliques and all that but that's because it is a HIGH SCHOOL so that is no reason to hate it.
Kids getting the good test scores are doing it despite the school not because of the school. There are some excellent, some awful and some so-so teachers like most public schools. The administration hates parents. Students learn on their own with mountains of tedious homework so that lousy teachers can get the same results as good teachers. If your child has a disability, get sick, is bullied or any other thing goes wrong and you need to work with the administration I suggest you hire a tough as nails advocate or lawyer. Pros? The orchestra, choir and theater programs are led by a couple of the excellent teachers and filled with some of the most thoughtful, hardworking and caring students in the school. Some of the sports programs are great while others have a heavy drinking culture. Parents do a lot for the school and I give the parents 5 stars for involvement the reason I have 3 stars is that parents are not made to feel welcome by administration. So disappointing.
I graduated Langley in 2013. Let me start off by saying this. Langley is not the typical high school. It is made for the kids of extremely wealthy families who are in their own cliques. They drive mercedes benz and BMWs to school. Have you seen the size of the parking lot? It's as big as the whole school! Teachers for the most part can't teach although they are willing to stay after school. There is ZERO school spirit. There was absolutely nothing that made me want to stay at Langley. I was so happy when I left. So far, I've learned more in one year of college than I did in four years at Langley. I remember I basically had no social life at Langley. In college, my social life has drastically improved. All they care about are the kids who take 5 AP's and the athletes. The rest of us (people who aren't exceptionally smart but work hard) don't matter. If you are looking to learn and enjoy high school, don't go to Langley.
I don't like this school one bit. There is no way the school can improve. Some tips for others is not to go to this school period. Your life will be miserable if you go to this school. I can't explain in words how bad I hate this school.
Where do I start. The kids at this school are absolutely cliquish. If you are relatively new, there is absolutely now way you will make friends and form your own group. There is only one group and that group is made of the kids who have either grown up in the area and know everyone or the kids who are extremely smart and take a boat load of APs. Teachers are way overrated and are very inconsistent grading wise. Some teachers are very erratic and and confusing. There is no school spirit or anything that makes you want to be in the school. The school in general is made for people who grow up there.
This school is absolutely awful. Most of the students are extremely rude and there are many cliques (as of any school), however, the students here take the clique-ish behavior to a whole new extreme. If you are not 1) From Cooper, 2) Very wealthy, 3) Taking as many AP courses offered to you, you will not be slightly close to being happy in Langley. Honestly, the way others act at this school is repulsive. Girls and guys both. You will find that most individuals are extremely judgmental and that almost all of the friend groups are very exclusive, making it clear that they are not willing to make friends with people below them or be willing to even be nice to them. Go to a different Highschool where people have moral values rather than people who focus on money and doing their best to make anyone else feel inferior to them. Speaking from experience.
I went to Langley. Graduated in 2010. If you want an inside look at this school here you go...Langley isn't a high school. It's similar to that of a cut throat business and if you don't make it you're out, and if you're out there's a ton of kids who will let you know just that. I played two sports at Langley, and struggled with school. If you want to talk about a school driving a kid to this point I could line up 200 kids in my own graduating class alone and they would say they were a couple clicks away from getting to that point. The social environment at this school is ruthless. Absolutely ruthless, and I was considered to be a part of the "in" crowd. On top of the stresses you would face at any high school, this school makes it worse. There's an elite group of AP students and athletes who get the best treatment and they know it. Everyone else is a bottom feeder and you can't really understand it until you go to this school and see it everyday.
None of the tenured teachers are still there, huge turn over in the past 5 years. Teachers seem to come and go and currently there are a handful of veteran skilled teachers working with a host of undereducated newbies. Teachers are leaving for a reason, admiistration is horrible. Fairfax County is one of the best in the nation for public education, you will find great teachers all over the county, just not at Langley (anymore).
Langley has had a serious fall from grace. While it is still one of the best performing schools in the county that says nothing about the facility nor teachers. What makes the school is the academic environment creatred by the motivated students, there is real pressure to do your work and test well. However, the school has completely overlooked the average kid, not to mention special ed, and focuses solely on AP tests and the Ivy league bound. Not to mention that the school has "zero" of the past administration as Matt Ragone has systematically destroyed the front office by his lack of oversight and horrible hiring practices. There is "zero" school spirit, "zero" faculty comradery. It is by far the worst facility in the county with horrible air quality, technology and space in general. The renovations could not happen soon enough but this will not be enough to save this schools reputation. I actually have the option of sending my kids to Langley even though it is not is the district that I live in but have decided to send my kids to our "local" school beacuse I feel it is honestly better.
Langley has a false sense about it. Childen are very clickish. If you are not one of the pretty people whos parents have paved your way in life... count on your children being treated very poorly. Activities are reserved for the popular people and your kids will be excluded even if they try. The school brags about the high test scores... The real reason scores are so high is due to the upper class families who move into the district rather then the staff itself. Do yourself a huge favor and move your children into an institution where kindness & integrity reign over power and cruelty. Try Loudoun County. Great schools, all new, good staff, co-operative attitude. I moved out of the area to protect my children.
Langley and excellence seem to coincide. While not a flawless learning environment, Langley provides a challenging and intense atmosphere that I've found highly conducive towards learning. The teachers and administrative staff were helpful, and most cared for the students. However, as I read these comments, I'm appalled. I graduated in 2012, but I can't imagine the school to have changed too much in that time. Bullying was perhaps the greatest taboo for my class, especially when it came to those in the special needs program. To those who speak of the nonchalant administrative staff and uncaring teachers -- I simply cannot take it seriously. My counselors and teachers were fantastic, and they helped me regardless of personal circumstances. Langley is an environment suitable for any who wish to learn. Going in with notions of cliques and social status creates an atmosphere of inevitability; look for them and you shall find without fail. But that is true with just about anything. Langley is what you make of it. To prospective/continuing students: Talk to your teachers and counselors. Give them the respect you want them to give you, and then perhaps you'll find them helpful.
I have two daughters in great colleges, both Langley graduates. Langley is a tough academic environment and a challenging social environment that prepares students well for what they will encounter in college and the "real world." One of my daughters' roommates is from a "good" Richmond area school that is far less challenging, and she both struggling and shocked at how easily my daughter handles the academic load. If you want easy for your kids, this is not your school, but if you value quality faculty and top-drawer competition, you will appreciate Langley. All that said, the Principal is out of his element, a poor comparison to his predecessor who is overmatched by his faculty and lacks the poise necessary to deal with high expectation parents. If Fairfax County Schools wants to maintain Langley's rigor, it should consider a change at the top.
Langley High School: My kids have thrived at Langley. The athletics are competitive and the academics even better. The new administration cares about the kids and the teenages have responded. My oldest graduated from Langley in 2012. I have 2 others (class of 2015 and 2017). The spirit of the school is much better now, than 5 years ago. Bulling has been replaced with class spirit. The kids try and help each other and cheer at sporting events (not as much a popularity contest at games anymore). Lax, Softball, swimming have all been positive experiences for us. Parents need to keep their kids away from alcohol (with a zero tolerance policy) at home and schools. I find the private school parents allow drinking more frequently than Langley parents. If you want a dry high school experience you can get it. Focus on athletics and academics over popularity. Ground your kids with a moral compass and they will pick good friends - don't leave it to the school. LAngley is one of the top schools in the country (public or private). It is a model school for others to follow.
I'm an upcoming junior in the 13-14 year in Langley. I'm not from a wealthy family and contrary to the comments here, I've found that from my experience that one doesn't really get bullied here based purely on wealth. I'm not popular at all either, I have maybe 3 close friends. I haven't seen any actual serious intent-to-traumatize bullying ever happen. Yes, some kids do follow the "rich white spoiled kid" stereotype to a T but they are able to joke about it. Drugs and alcohol are widespread and from what I know aspirant drug dealers are particularly interested in peddling their wares in Langley due to the student body's abundant disposable wealth. Thankfully, no hard drugs (besides alcohol) are being circulated. As for the academics, the school offers many AP and Honors courses for the student. For the most part, the teachers are extremely well qualified and are great at explaining the subject/helping the student, but in stark contrast there are several teachers that simply do not belong in their career field of choice.
As a contractor with Langley and a former student (from the 70s!), I have had the chance to view it from the inside and outside. I have also had the chance to work in several other high schools in FCPS and LCPS. The quality expectations are very high, and kids usually rise to them; I think that the biggest problem kids face is not from other kids but from themselves pushing too hard. I have dealt with admins. at other schools who push kids for the school numbers, so this is not unique. I see parents highly involved. I walk past classes in session and see teachers working hard to engage students in learning. I know the principal has fans and enemies, but he has the students best interests at heart; he's great! I think that most all the problems listed here by others are at every high school, due to the pervasive problem--all highschoolers are teenagers--subject to throes of hormones and other dramas, over-introspection, and heightened insecurities. This happens at every high school; the haves and have-nots are not the issue here anymore than any other HS--it's the clash of insecurity, hope, and expectations. Welcome to life.
Social- Everyone is to be complaining that Langley is full of spoiled, rich, arrogant white kids who look down on poorer people and only care about popularity. That is unfair and exaggerated, while the rich factor does have a large influence, there are also a LOT of people who are really decent, you can't just stereotype everyone. And honestly, dealing with people like that is a skill for later in life. Academics- Very hard, and a greater grade disparity bc some have tiger parents or are major try-hards, also kids take harder course loads because then they get private tutors when they need help. Teachers- Can't compare schools, but can tell you this: that teachers only care about AP/HN kids is false. I've been in reg level classes before, and have seen some really good teachers. Percentagewise teachers like AP students bc the students generally value class, whereas in reg a lot of students will take advantage of them and screw off. Teachers like a student who values their class, be it reg, HN, or AP. People who say otherwise are probably just resentful. Question- How is it that 100% of students/parents are rich snobs, yet 95% of comments say they hate that atmosphere?
For those thinking of moving to great falls, if you are not rich or not asian, you will not belong. No one is suggesting go to private school in area, it would more of the same. Go to a normal fairfax school like madison or south lakes , your kids will thank you for it later.
I have to laugh at the people saying they will be sending their children to private school rather than to Langley. Their reasoning is apparently because they are unhappy with the wealth factor at Langley, but I'm wondering what they expect to find at a $40,000/yr. private school? It strikes me as extremely naive to assume that their child will have a better, more "down-to-earth" experience if only they attend a private school. If anything, the differences between the haves and have-nots will be all the more pronounced. Regardless of the wealth of many (but not all) of the Langley student body, there is a niche for everyone, or at least for those willing to involve themselves and find like-minded friends. My child is not an athlete, but has become very involved in other, more academic pursuits, and has a great group of friends as a result. Langley has its faults -- as do ALL high schools -- but I believe its strengths are more numerous. You will find cliques, rich kids, mean kids, etc. at any high school anywhere. At least at Langley there are no gangs and the education is top-notch.
One of the best things that was done at Langley was to decouple the AP history/english courses. Allows someone that has NOT been on the honors/ap track their whole student life to try an AP class without taking both. Fairfax county resources should not just be focused on the upper echelon of kids. The counselors all suggest to limit the number of AP classes. But in true Langley Spirit, other parents of the elite are pushing to stop this and require coupling the AP English and AP History classes, maintaining their exclusive status for their kids. No other high schools do this. It just never changes here. The condescending attitude of the parents is tough to take.
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