Dear Students and Parents,
Welcome to the High School for Environmental Studies (HSES), the first school of its kind in the nation. HSES opened its doors in 1992 with 150 ninth graders. This year there are approximately 1,450 students, grades 9 - 12.
Our school is a state-of-the-art showcase for environmental studies. The facility includes wireless internet in every classroom, full access to wireless laptops for all students in classrooms, a roof garden, a media center, a yoga/dance studio, a weight room and a collegiate-sized gymnasium. All of our students are exposed to environmental issues through required and elective courses. Our school has developed a series of model environmental lessons which have been used in schools throughout the country.
HSES' combination of high academic standards, unique environmental course work and hands-on service learning programs have had a positive affect on students. High attendance rates and test scores have made HSES a school recognized for educational excellence (*). Over eighty percent of the school's first three graduating classes were accepted to college. Our high school was named, by the Manhattan Superintendent, as a demonstration site for school standards for students, professional pevelopment for teachers, and as a school-to-career consortium member school. Perhaps the most telling indicator of HSES' success is that, as information about the school has found its way to the parents, the number of applicants to our school has grown tenfold.
In order to provide education that exceeds the required standards, our faculty periodically undertakes staff development to update our curriculum, our assessments procedures and our teaching methodology. Our faculty tries to create an integrated curriculum and to push the use of technology in each course offered.
As an HSES student, it will be your responsibility to become an active participant in your school and community. You will have many opportunities to become involved: the internship program, student activities, community services projects, and independent research are just a few of the available options. As you progress through HSES, you will develop the skills needed to make sensitive and intelligent decisions about your world and your environment.
As an HSES parent, we strongly encourage you to take an active role in your child's education. Our Parents' Association meets once a month (every third Wednesday at 7 p.m.). In addition, we encourage you to become involved with the School Leadership Team (SLT).
Our beautiful facility offers us a reminder that the care and concern for the environment begins with the responsibility for our own school environment. Since this is our "home," the responsibility belongs to all of us.
We welcome you to the HSES school community, and look forward to working with you to insure the academic success of our students and school.
Shirley H. Matthews
* The New York Post (9/98) listed HSES as one of the five "Schools that Work." In January 1999, the school's Internship Program was profiled on WNBC's "The Winner Next Door" and. New York Magazine (10/01) listed HSES as one of New York City's "ten hottest" public high schools.