My kids went through this school and it is making some very good changes to make it even better. It has all the benefits and drawbacks of a upper-middle class school district.
My child has had major issues being confronted with drug and alcohol use on a daily basis while at MIHS. It is a very unhealthy culture of wealthy, spoiled, substance-abusing children. All the good teachers in a school cannot compensate for a hostile learning environment.
Mercer Island High School is what you make of it. In terms of education, our school excels in most subjects aside from math. The main problem I have with the education at my school is that the regular classes are very easy and the honors are very hard. There is no in between. You either have little homework or 7 hours a night. For the most part I have had very caring teachers who do their best to help me learn. The main problem I have with my school is some of the students that attend it. In terms of drugs, I would say Mercer Island is about the same as every other public high school, no worse or no better. It is very easy to avoid doing drugs if you are a student, but if you want to do drugs, it is very easy to get them. The thing I dislike is the cliques. A lot of the people at my school are very rude and condescending, and a lot of them lack empathy for others. Granted, you can find people who are not like that, but those who are make Mercer Island High School a very negative place. Attend Mercer Island at your own risk, our school looks good on college apps and we have great statistics, but at times it can be very bad.
As an active parent in the PTA I see the hard work put in by the administration, staff and parents to provide quality educational, sports, and leadership opportunities and programs in a positive environment with a culture of success. Go Islanders!
Amazing! Our staff does everything they can to ensure students are feeling welcome, included and are engaged in the classroom. The administration makes sure we have clubs and activities that support all different types of students and personalities.
My school is amazing. Went to Issaquah High for two weeks and realized what a mistake it was and moved back to this district. Kids are much better dressed. Teachers are amazing... Don't know what's up with all the other people saying it is bad.
Mercer Island High School is not as good as the principal said; it is a lousy school and some of the math teachers don't know what they are doing.
Compassionate, dedicated teachers, and high standards, I'd like to give this school a higher rating. Unfortunately, there are over-crowded classrooms, incredibly spoiled kids and the place is riddled with drug-use/drug deals. The attitude of parents seems to be "If the kids are achieving in sports and academics I'll look the other way."
Very good school with engaged students, parents and teachers. High achievement rates in and out of the classroom -- extracurricular are strong as are music, debate and athletic programs. Typical challenges for suburban high schools exist...but they are generally handled well. Always some areas for improvement (currently: some language areas, consistency among teachers, more reading/writing assignments in all levels of classes). There is a principal opening....the previous one left after 6+ years to get on the superintendent track in another district. Should be a great job for a leader who has a vision for the future -- is willing to make some important changes (see above) but most of all wants students to learn, love learning and be successful for their next step 9nearly 100% go to college).
Mercer Island is an absolutely fantastic high school! I could go on for pages describing why it is. Let me break it down for you. 97% of MIHS grads attend a four year college after high school. It is an expectation at MIHS to do well in school and not slack off and skip. Our school has won the Washington State Scholastic Cup for the past two years that means our athletes grades averages were the highest in the state. Athletically Mercer Island is a true power house. We won state in 5 sports last year and won districts in many more. Around 80% students are involved in some form of athletics. MI also has a great culture. Kids usually enjoy school for the most part. Another cool thing is that all new kids find friends to hang out with within 3 days easy here. The students at MI simply are really nice, there is little to no bullying, no fights, no gangs. The kids are no where near to being spoiled little rich kids like so many of you believe. Our Achilles heel however is drinking. Its true that a lot of people drink alcohol occasionally on MI but its just because their friends are. Overall Mercer Island is a great school but i believe it is the Students that make the culture so good.
To justify drug and alcohol use by saying "well, everyone does it" is a huge cop out. Everyone doesn't do it and there's simply no excuse not only for the rate of drug and alcohol use here, but for the parents who allow it. MIHS is a good school; but only if you fit the mold. The Mercer Island mold, is rich, pretty/handsome, athletic, and rich. Anyone else is in for bullying, being ignored by teachers, and left to drift. MIHS is not a great school. Kids do well because they have parents who can afford outside tutoring. It's well known on the island that we have a private/public school system. The faculty here are mediocre at best.
As a former principal of MIHS, I am proud and pleased to see thisForbes.com objective measuring of schools rather than the Newsweek rating. That rating is determined by dividing the number of seniors in a school, into the number of students that took AP exams that year. A simple quotient does not fully measure the quality of a school. Having lived in the shadow of our neighboring school district placing two or three of their high schools on the "Newsweek Top 100 High Schools" list for years, it is gratifying to see this truly deserved recognition. A significant factor of this recognition is that it includes all of the schools in the city. This reflects the very high level of parent support and interest we have consistently seen at MIHS.
BEST SCHOOL EVER! MIHS is the best school in the entire nation. It is filled with the most intelligent, athletic, social, and well-rounded students around. I have never seen or heard of a better school!
This school is an incredible school all the parents and students who criticize Mercer Island High School probably did not do well academically. Our school is well known for the excellent teachers and our school does give out hard grades, but these grades are weighted so colleges know Mercer Island is a tougher school system and look at your GPA in a different way. Parents freak out when their child doesn't get an A and they pull them out and put them in private schools where they think they are getting a better education. They really aren't. You may say there's a lot of drinking and drug use but really its just as normal in many other ares and they are TEENAGERS. Honestly students are going to be introduced to these things in college so wouldn't you rather have your child learn their lesson in high school instead of in college when your future career depends on you being successful in college? moving to Mercer Island is a big obstacle but life's full of them so put on your big girl panties a deal with it.
Now people might think that because of the high test scores and the student drop out rate that MIHS is a great school, but it is not. MIHS has one of the worst drug and alcohol problems I've ever heard of, mostly due to parents. Parents on Mercer Island are more into defending their children rather than protecting their children. If there is a problem they simply hire the best lawyer they can get to keep their children out of trouble. The Mercer Island police department also does not do much to combat this problem as I have rarely heard of somebody actually getting in serious trouble. If I were a parent, I would consider it after looking at how great the academics are, but reject it after how terrible everything else is.
We moved to Mercer Island from out of state and to Mercer Island solely for the school system. While I am more than ready to believe it may be the best the State of Washington has to offer-- the "best" here is so poor compared to average or below average on the East Coast, that it is not worth the cost of moving to MI. If I had know this two years ago, we would have chosen to live in a less expensive neighborhood, per haps in Seattle, and gone the private school route, which we are now doing anyway! It is the only way to get a decent education in this state!. IE in An underperforming highschool in New Jersey they have a 13: 1 student ration because they do not meet the norm of 11:1 here we out per form at 21:1 even thought the STate average is 19:1!
I was somewhat skeptical about MIHS because I know Bellevue's AP participation is great. But my two kids (one a senior and one a sophomore) have absolutely blossomed there. They've had great teachers; the principal provides the right balance of leadership, management, and connection with the kids; and the coursework has challenged them to think and expand their horizons. The school has an ethic of always trying to improve that I think is important. It used to have the reputation of "resting on its laurels," but as far as I can tell, that's in the past. Math instruction could still improve; the curriculum's good and the teachers know their stuff, but some aren't too engaging with the kids.
I am a student at MIHS and I can proudly say that it is an amazing school!!! I love it!!!
The students respect teachers, strive to learn, and aim for academic success. Teachers, administration, and students work together to accomplish students' preparation for life's goals, both social and academic. All take pride in success.
My two kids attended MI HS. They liked most teachers, and respected the high bar they set, even when they complained about the difficulty or volume of the homework they got. I agree with the March 1, 2008 post by a student -- in the end *parents* have the responsibility to educate their kids to know to stay away from drugs and alcohol. One important thing that I havent seen mentioned yet is that BMW's in school parking lot put a lot of pressure and is cause for a lot of family discussion over priorities, over what car the kid should get and what is wrong with riding the school bus.
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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.
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