Thursday, December 13, 2007

Basic Hard Academics

This article appeared in the Times today about Kirkland's International High School. From the article:

"Whatever you call it, the school's 380 seventh- through 12th-graders are performing better than most students in the country. About 95 percent go on to college and 100 percent of 10th-graders meet the standard for the WASL reading and math tests."

What do they take?

"Created in 1997 by a group of parents looking for a smaller educational format, ICS was modeled after Bellevue's International School, which was ranked fifth in the magazine listing. All students take six core subjects the first four years: humanities, international studies, art, math, science and Spanish. Beginning in 10th grade, only honors and Advanced Placement classes are offered."

There are no sports or vocal ed offered; music and drama are offered after school. Sports can be taken through Redmond high school.

"Minority enrollment at ICS is about 2 percent, while disadvantaged student enrollment is 0.5 percent." It's also a 7-12 grade level make-up.

Clearly a school for students who want to work hard. It's open to everyone on a lottery system. It's a bit confusing because Bellevue also has a high-powered international school. It is unclear to me what makes Kirkland an international school; the article doesn't say.

It's housed in a former elementary school (which tells you that short of safety, in the end, good academics can trump a building.

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