Timeout New York Kids

Make the most of your city

Upper East Side

For a chance to savor the lap of luxury, head uptown.

High schools

H.S. 519 Talent Unlimited High School

317 East 67 Street. Grades 9–12.

What's special: A small school where academics and performing arts get equal billing.

Downside:Limited upper level academic offerings and after-school sports teams.

Visit Talent Unlimited High School and you might hear the chorus singing a finger-snapping version of the jazzy tune "Get Happy." Wander into a drama class and you'll find kids waving their arms or crawling on all fours in skits. Leotard-clad dancers leap across the auditorium stage. Everywhere you go in this small school, kids seem jazzed up, happy, and self-assured. Talent Unlimited admits students after an audition, but it balances a strong performing arts program with engaging academics. Read the full review from Insideschools.org

411 East 76 Street. Grades 9–12.

What's special: Well-rounded liberal arts education in small, cheery building.

Downside: Tiny gym with low ceilings; limited advanced science classes

A sparkling new building, talented teachers, and a philosophy that draws on both traditional and progressive methods have made Eleanor Roosevelt High School, nicknamed ELRO, a well-regarded and popular school in just a few years. Opened with 100 9th graders in temporary quarters in Chelsea in September 2002, Eleanor Roosevelt High School moved to its permanent home in the former Sotheby's warehouse in September 2003. Read the full review from Insideschools.org

317 East 67 Street. Grades 9–12.

What's special: Small class sizes, liberal learning environment, supportive teachers

Downside: Some lackluster teaching and immature student behavior.

At Vanguard High School, students can wear hats in class, be openly gay or obviously adept at chemistry, and nobody judges. Students who despise "adult rules" and crave learning their own way will enjoy the school's open, liberal approach to learning. Some students, however, lack maturity and focus. Located in a large building, Vanguard boasts a swimming pool, glossy hardwood floors, and wide hallways covered in murals and other student artwork. Even the lockers, conventionally boring elsewhere, are here painted light green and decorated with ivy and flowers. Inside the classrooms, more art dangles from the ceilings.Read the full review from Insideschools.org

317 East 67 Street. Grades 9–12.

What's special: New immigrants get lots of practice speaking English

Downside: Some great teachers, but turnover is higher than ideal

Manhattan International, modeled on International High School in Queens, prepares for college students who have just arrived in the United States. Housed in the renovated Julia Richman complex, it shares pleasant facilities with several other high schools and an elementary school, Ella Baker. There are no bells, and classes last 70 minutes, giving students and teachers a chance to study topics in depth. It's an unusually gentle school, seemingly designed to smooth the way for students who have hard times both in their countries of origin and in the United States.Read the full review from Insideschools.org

421 East 88 Street. Grades 9–12.

What's special: Internships in which students assist in elementary school

Downside: Too many kids leave without graduating

Richard R. Green High School of Teaching, named for the schools chancellor who died in 1989, is designed to encourage young people to consider a career in teaching. Students have internships, mostly in the Bronx, in which they assist elementary school teachers in their classrooms. The school is a cheerful, orderly place, where the kids mostly seem to be engaged in their work. "The teachers are nice," said one girl. "It's small, so you know everyone." The school is about 80 percent female. While the curriculum is traditional and there's a lot of emphasis on preparation for Regents exams, there's also room for class discussions. There is a gentle rapport and a nice give-and-take between the teachers and the kids. Students call teachers and even the principal by first names. Read the full review from Insideschools.org

71 East 94th Street. Grades 7–12.

What's special: Brilliant kids and stellar record of college admission.

Downside: Mountains of homework and lots of stress.

Like Hunter College Elementary School, Hunter College High School is touted as a "laboratory" school for the study of "gifted" education and is administered by the City University of New York. It is a highly successful, very selective, and competitive school that prepares its students for the country's most elite colleges. It's known particularly for its strength in the humanities, but it also offers high-level math and science courses. Hunter also has an unusually strong program in music and art. The drama department offers students the chance to write and perform their own plays and musicals. Student musicians have performed from France to Senegal. Art history classes take trips to Florence and Siena. Read the full review from Insideschools.org

320 East 96 Street. Grades 6–12.

What's special: Collaboration with Mt. Sinai Hospital to provide internships; tutorial program with Columbia University

Downside: Cramped facilities; no outdoor space; many students begin school with weak academic skills.

Reading scores:3 stars

Math scores:4 stars

Life Sciences was founded in 1998 in collaboration with Mt. Sinai School of Medicine to encourage minority students to prepare early for careers in medicine. Students are placed in internships with doctors and technicians at Mt. Sinai and get solid instruction in the school's newly renovated science labs equipped with state-of-the-art equipment. Read the full review from Insideschools.org

317 East 67 Street. Grades 9--12.

What's special: Intellectually stimulating and supportive atmosphere

Downside: Not for kids who want to blend in with the wallpaper; tiny school can't take everyone

Urban Academy on Manhattan's Upper East Side is an unorthodox high school. Teachers go by their first names. Kids can listen to headphones while they take tests. Classes are made up of students from all grades. In-class debates get heatedand so can students' language. The halls are lined with worn couches, where students retire in groups during lunch and other breaks to hang out or listen to impromptu musical performances by their classmates. Read the full review from Insideschools.org


  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3
  4. 4
  5. 5
  6. 6
  7. 7
  8. 8
Share your thoughts
  1. * mandatory fields

Events for kids by date

Americangirl.com for Events!

  1. Aladdin

    This adaptation of the Disney classic tops the res...

  2. "Alice: 150 Years...

    After a century and a half, the original Alice’s A...

  3. An American in Paris

    Ballet choreographer Christopher Wheeldon makes hi...

40 more events »