The Office of Student Enrollment welcomes all rising eighth grade students and first-time ninth grade students applying to high school for the 2017-2018 school year!
Get ready to apply to high school this fall by taking these next steps:
Supporting diversity in Specialized High Schools: There are six new initiatives to provide more outreach, tutoring, and opportunities for underrepresented students to enroll in Specialized High Schools. Read the FAQs below to learn more about these diversity initiatives.
There are nine Specialized High Schools in New York City that serve the needs of academically and artistically gifted students. These schools have a separate admissions process than the general High School Admissions application. Students can participate in both admissions processes.
There are also six new initiatives to increase diversity at these schools—learn more about the initiatives in the FAQs.
Eight of the Specialized High Schools base admission solely on your score on the Specialized High Schools Admissions Test (SHSAT), and one school requires an audition in a talent area and also reviews academic achievement.
You can learn more about these schools on their websites and at their fall Open House events:
The Specialized High Schools Admissions Test (SHSAT)
Auditions for: Dance, Drama, Instrumental Music, Fine Arts, Technical Theater, Vocal Music
You will need to take the Specialized High School Admissions Test (SHSAT) and/or audition for LaGuardia High School if you want to apply to any of the Specialized High Schools. You have from September 8 until October 13, 2016 to tell your guidance counselor you want to register for the test and/or audition.
2016-2017 Specialized High Schools Student Handbook: The Handbook helps you learn about the Specialized High Schools and to prepare for your test/audition. You can also pick up a copy from a middle school or Family Welcome Center.
Admissions Events: Attend a Specialized High Schools Family Workshop in July 2016 and the Citywide and Borough High School Fairs in the fall to hear from a Specialized High School representatives, parents, and students about the admissions process.
2017 New York City High School Directory: You may also be interested in high school programs that require submitting the High School Application—learn about those programs and their admissions process.
For test locations, see page 11 of the 2017 Specialized High Schools Student Handbook
For audition details, see page 12 of the 2017 Specialized High Schools Student Handbook
Saturday, October 22Sunday, October 23
Dates are scheduled according to the borough in which your school is located, not your current home address, and by the first letter of your last name.
Download a PDF of the HS Admissions Timeline.
All eighth graders and first-time ninth graders who are New York City residents are eligible to take the SHSAT. In September of your eighth or ninth grade, you should inform your guidance counselor of your decision so that an admission ticket can be issued for the test. This is true even for students who attend private/parochial schools.
All eighth graders and first-time ninth graders who are New York City residents are eligible to audition. In September of your eighth or ninth grade, you should inform your guidance counselor of your decision so that an admission ticket can be issued for the appropriate audition(s). This is true even for students who attend private/parochial schools.
The Specialized High Schools Admissions Test (SHSAT) is a written test with Verbal and Math sections including:
You should ask your guidance counselor for a copy of the Specialized Schools Handbook which includes two sample tests. In addition, the Handbook describes audition requirements for LaGuardia’s six studios. You may also access the Specialized Handbook online. When you are an 8th or 9th grader, your guidance counselor will provide more specific information about the SHSAT. In the meantime, use the following suggestions to help prepare for the test:
Students taking the SHSAT who have a conflict with the audition schedule are to report for their audition(s) on the weekend assigned to their borough on the Saturday or Sunday for which there is not a conflict with the SHSAT. If you have an approved audition exception, please have your guidance counselor contact the LaGuardia Admissions Office for rescheduling an audition.
Chancellor Fariña has announced six new initiatives aimed at increasing access and boosting diversity at New York City’s Specialized High Schools. These efforts are beginning this summer and will be in place before students take the Specialized High Schools Admissions Test (SHSAT) in October. Our goal is for the population of students enrolled in the Specialized High Schools to be more reflective of our city as a whole. To that end, we anticipate the Specialized High School Diversity Initiatives will accomplish the following:
1. Assemble an Outreach Team to increase testing rates among high-potential students in underrepresented communities.2. Implement a SHSAT Day at targeted schools in the fall to ease the burden of testing on the weekend. Automatically sign up high-potential students for the SHSAT at these schools.3. Increase the availability of SHSAT test prep through partnerships between afterschool programs and test prep organizations.4. Expand DREAM, a 22-month preparatory program for disadvantaged students. Develop a new, shorter Intensive test prep program for the highest-performing rising 8th graders from underrepresented communities.5. Expand the Discovery program, an alternate pathway for disadvantaged students with SHSAT scores that are slightly lower than the cut score.6. Promote a school climate at all Specialized High Schools that welcomes diverse learners. Convene a working group of DOE stakeholders and external organizations to help each Specialized High School design and implement a plan for their specific school community.
About 15 million dollars through fiscal year 2020 across the initiatives.
The Specialized High Schools should better reflect the diversity of our neighborhoods and our city. These schools have historically had a low percentage of Black and Latino students enrolled compared to citywide averages. Over the past few years we have seen a decrease in the number of Black and Latino eighth graders who take the SHSAT, receive an offer to a Specialized High School, and enroll in one of the Specialized High Schools in the fall of their ninth grade year. This school year, 11 percent of students enrolled in the eight testing Specialized High Schools are Black or Latino, compared to 68 percent citywide.
We welcome the opportunity to partner with community-based organizations (CBOs) in our ongoing effort to introduce more diversity to the Specialized High Schools. Two initiatives in particular include external partnerships as part of our plans:
SHSAT Day schools were selected by looking for higher-needs schools with relatively large numbers of high-performing students who did not take the SHSAT last year. These seven schools will host their SHSAT Day on October 25.
Families are encouraged to visit this webpage for continued updates or call 311 to learn more about Specialized High School Admissions and the new diversity efforts at these schools.
Find high schools based on interest area, borough, school size, and more.
Learn about key dates and events for High School Admissions.
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If you have questions about High School Admissions, please call (718) 935-2399 or email HSEnrollment@schools.nyc.gov.