General Information

School History

Founding Principal Eric Nadelstern started 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 completing all required credits for graduation and by presenting and passing multiple Performance-Based Assessment Task (PBAT) portfolio presentations. 


We are a member school in the Internationals Network for Public Schools, the NY Performance Standards Consortium, and CUNY Early College Initiative

Through these partnerships, we are able to offer our students a rigorous, collaborative, in-depth curriculum that aligns with and includes college curriculum and college classes at LaGuardia Community College. Our students are able to take college classes at LaGuardia Community College when they’re ready, with most students starting to enroll in college classes by the end of 10th grade. Upon graduating from HS in four years, students are able to continue their college education at LaGuardia CC for one year for free through our Early College 5th Year Program. 

English language development is taught in all classes across the school and our school is designed to serve our ENL students best, include the many assets of our diverse student population into our curriculum. 

Jackie Valane, Principal

Jackie Valane, Principal 1
Jackie Valane, Principal

Ms. Jackie has been at IHS LaGuardia since 2006 and has had the honor of leading the school as principal since 2014. She keeps students at the core of everything that we do and has an open door policy. She speaks with students and parents throughout the day and works with teachers in meetings in order to constantly improve our successful school. 

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

Mr. Harry began as assistant principal at IHS in 2004. He supports the management of the school and our HR and financial resources. He is often hard at work in his office but loves to work with students in a weekly class or simply by talking with them in the hallway. 

Joelle Vecsey, Assistant Principal

Ms. Joelle started at IHS in 2008. She works with teachers on instructional development and works with our guidance team on student social-emotional development. She is very knowledgeable about resources and helps to connect our families to ones that are beneficial.

Graduation Certification

In order to graduate, students must complete all credit requirements through coursework. Students also present their PABT projects in a portfolio presentation in 10th grade and 12th grade. In order to prepare for their portfolio presentations, students work closely with a mentor in the 10th grade and again in the 12th grade to improve their work and practice. Students present their work to a panel of teachers and students in 10th grade and 12th grade in order to pass their PBATs. That process of in-depth project work in classes and preparation with a teacher through one-on-one tutoring prepares our students to present their projects in English, which is a new language to all students. Our students excel at this and improve their English skills along the way! 

Performance Based Assessment Tasks (PBATs) and Projects Included in Portfolio:

*Research Paper
*Literary Essay
*Science Experiment Project
*Mathematical Modeling and Analysis Project
*Personal Expression of Creativity with Reflective Essay
*Native Language Project with Language Analysis and Reflective Essay
*Written Self-Evaluation

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

Graduate Profile

For the June 2023 graduation cohort, 93% of our students graduated on time. Each year, our student graduates complete a post-secondary college and career plan so that all students who graduate have an individual plan for what their next steps are. Our graduates go onto college in some of the following places:
CUNY Colleges, 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.