General Information

School History

Former Principal Eric Nadelstern founded The International High School at LaGuardia Community College in 1985 as a joint venture by the New York City Board of Education and the Board of Higher Education of the City of New York. The school has been designated as an Academic Excellence Project and has twice been cited as a Center of Excellence for the teaching of English communication arts.

International High School Logo 1
International High School Logo


IHS curriculum requirements meet or exceed all New York State Education Department standards for a high school diploma. All classes are heterogeneous (mixed) by language, achievement, grade level, and age. Classes are structured around the development of thematic projects in cooperative learning groups. Students work in depth, both collaboratively and independently. Students fulfill graduation requirements by passing year-long interdisciplinary programs incorporating the Humanities, Math/Science/Technology, and Applied Learning. There are six interdisciplinary programs based on such themes as:

  • International Quest
  • International Dreamers
  • Shine
  • Stars
  • Journey

Applied Learning Opportunities

Interdisciplinary programs give students a variety of opportunities to apply what they learn in the classroom to real life situations, such as working with architects to build bridges or environmentalists to clean up polluted bodies of ware. Two special programs include internship and community service.
Internship: Some teams offer career education internships where students explore careers they are interested in while attending high school. During internship, students take two regular classes and, for the rest of their day, work for various organizations and companies. Internship sites include government agencies, big and small businesses, and hospitals.
Community Service: The school also offers students an opportunity to develop a community service project and put it into practice. In the past, students have researched and presented material on teen issues, developed a website, and have worked together to try to create green space near Long Island City schools.

The International High School at LaGuardia Community College is a proud member of the Internationals Network for Public Schools.

Jackie Valane, Principal 1
Jackie Valane, Principal

Jackie Valane, Principal

As Principal, Jaclyn helps to constantly improve instruction and to support personnel in order to produce the best performance of the school as a whole. This will ultimately provide the best possible opportunities for students' educational and personal growth and development. Jaclyn works with faculty, students, and parents at various meetings and events in order to encourage a strong school culture. One of her favorite events is the annual International Food Festival in our courtyard. Jaclyn Valane started at The International High School as a science teacher in 2006. Her office is 152A.

Harry Schutz, Assistant Principal, Administration 1
Harry Schutz, Assistant Principal, Administration

Harry Schutz, Assistant Principal

An Assistant Principal supports the Principal's instructional programs and helps to provide a safe and secure learning environment for students and staff. He supports the management of the school and also of human and financial resources. He establishes an effective relationship with students, parents, staff and the DOE office support staff. Harry Schutz came to International High School as an Assistant Principal after being a social studies teacher at Middle College High School. He began his role as Assistant Principal in 2004. You can find him in his office working hard or helping a teacher or student with an issue. Mr. Harry's office is 152B.

Joelle Vecsey, Assistant Principal

As Assistant Principal, Joelle helps to provide instructional leadership in support of student language, intellectual, and social-emotional development. She does this by designing school-wide PD, connecting with outside resources, working with inter-disciplinary teacher teams and committees, and mentoring individual teachers. Joelle also assists students in support of their daily educational programs. She started at IHS in 2008 as an English teacher. Her office is 154C.

Graduation Certification

Students are graduated when they have successfully completed a minimum of four years of interdisciplinary study and have been certified by a panel including faculty, students, and representatives from the educational community. Each student is sponsored by a faculty mentor in 10th grade and then again in 12th grade who assists the student in assembling a portfolio of performance-based assessment tasks drawn from course work for presentation. Student may include college course work, and other evidence of growth and mastery as part of their petition for graduation. This panel determines whether the student's progress meets or exceeds the student performance standards for graduation in New York State, and merits graduation from The International High School. Certification for graduation is based on a consensus of the panel and is also subject to successful completion of course work. Graduation panels are scheduled throughout the year for 10th grade and 12th grade students.

Performance Based Assessment Tasks Included in Portfolio:

  • Research Paper
  • Literary Essay
  • Science Experiment/ Project
  • Application of Highest Level of Math Attainment
  • Personal Expression of Creativity with Reflective Essay
  • Native Language/Foreign Language Project with Language Analysis and Reflective Essay
  • Written Self Evaluation

Additionally, students complete an oral presentation and defense of the work.

Graduate Profile

Over 80% of IHS students graduate and go on to two or four year colleges. In addition to CUNY, many of our graduates continue to study and complete their college degrees with partial or full financial aid, including scholarships at many of the top universities in the country. These have included:
Bard College, Barnard, Bennington, Brandeis University, Clark University, Cooper Union, Cornell University, DePauw University, Georgetown University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Middlebury College, New York University, Rice University, Skidmore College, SUNY at Albany, SUNY at Binghamton, SUNY at New Paltz, SUNY at Stony Brook, University of Michigan, and Vanderbilt University.