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School Profiles

« See All | Fall Guide 2013

Central High School

About this school...

Mission Statement:
To prepare each student for the rigors of higher education. Building upon the school’s diversity, we aim to prepare students to contribute and thrive in a heterogeneous world. We will enable students to develop problem-solving skills, a lifelong passion for learning, and aspirations to be thoughtful leaders of their generation.

Governor’s Award for Excellence in Academics (Pennsylvania), 2012-13; only National Blue Ribbon high school in Pennsylvania, U.S. Department of Education, 2011; Title I School of Excellence, Pennsylvania Department of Education; Inspiration Award, College Board; honored for excellence by Philadelphia magazine and Redbook; recognition by Newsweek and U.S. News & World Report for all years in program

Points of pride: Student diversity; accomplishments of students, including most recent graduating class generating $23.6 million in scholarships; 26 AP courses; full International Baccalaureate Program; full partnership with alumni – Barnwell Library construction; extensive extracurricular opportunities; excellent staff and involved/supportive parents; special days: International, Women’s, Earth, and Career

AP courses:
Art History, Biology, Calculus AB, Calculus BC, Chemistry, Chinese Language & Culture, Computer Science A, English Language & Composition, English Literature & Composition, Environmental Science, European History, French Language & Culture, Government & Politics, Italian Language & Culture, Latin, Macroeconomics, Music Theory, Physics B, Physics C, Psychology, Spanish Language, Statistics, Design, Drawing, U.S. History, World History

Other special academic offerings:
Victorian Literature, Creative Writing, TV Production, Asian Studies, New American Studies, Constitutional Law, Materials Science, Genetics, Pharmacology, Organic Chemistry

Foreign languages:
Chinese, French, Italian, Latin, Spanish

Parent Involvement:
Home & School Association; School Advisory Council; chaperones for trips; committee participants; assisting in special events such as International Day; participation in the Freshmen Tea

Arts activities and classes:
Vocal music classes or ensemble; choir; instrumental music classes; jazz band; orchestra; drill team; theater instruction; school play or musical(s); visual arts instruction; film/video instruction

Activities & special programs:
Extensive club program includes at least 80 different interests, which allows students to pursue activities before and after school; extensive music and art program (traveling to many different countries, winning multiple awards); science research program; creative writing opportunities, including yearbook, newspaper, Mirror and Mosaic literary magazines; student-run broadcast network; video; drama; debate; mock trial; departmental and student-supervised tutoring options; class and schoolwide governmental activities

Boys' sports:
Baseball, Basketball, Bowling, Cross Country, Field Hockey, Football, Golf, Indoor Track & Field, Lacrosse, Soccer, Softball, Swimming & Diving, Tennis, Track & Field, Volleyball, Wrestling, Intramurals*

Girls' sports:
Basketball, Golf, Indoor Track & Field, Soccer, Swimming & Diving, Tennis, Track & Field, Volleyball, Cheerleading*, Intramurals*

SEPTA routes:
6, 8, 16, 18, 22, 26, 55, L, Broad Street subway

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Comments (48)

Submitted by Anonymous on November 4, 2011 5:15 pm

What are the chances of getting accepted with scores of proficient and advanced? I have straight A's and perfect attendance, and I'm looking to transfer there for my sophomore year. I'm a bit nervous that they will reject me because my PSSA scores are a bit low.

Submitted by Anonymous on March 23, 2013 10:47 pm
what did u receive on your pssas
Submitted by Anonymous on November 4, 2011 5:09 pm

What are the chances of getting accepted with scores of proficient and advanced? I have straight A's and perfect attendance, and I'm looking to transfer there for my sophomore year. I'm a bit nervous that they will reject me because my PSSA scores are a bit low.

Submitted by Anonymous on May 3, 2012 1:32 pm

this school sucks anyway.............. :(

Submitted by Anonymous on June 11, 2014 9:59 am
NO it does not
Submitted by Anonymous on May 3, 2012 1:35 pm

this school sucks anyway.............. :(

Submitted by Anonymous on May 3, 2012 1:37 pm

this school sucks anyway.............. :(

Submitted by Anonymous on May 10, 2012 2:42 pm

this school sucks they hit me all the time the pushed me around they killed a bot=y and throw him in the bathroom what else can they do no one come to this school i hate it I'm moving any wAY IM JUST TELLING YOU SO YOU CANT BE SUPRISED

Submitted by Anonymous on September 27, 2013 1:33 pm
are you serious??
Submitted by Anonymous on November 21, 2013 2:35 pm
I wonder which school you're talking about, whichever class you're in, that is...
Submitted by Anonymous on May 16, 2012 12:20 pm


Submitted by Anonymous on May 17, 2012 1:23 pm

stupid comment something else

Submitted by Anonymous on May 17, 2012 1:53 pm

this is awsome

Submitted by Anonymous on September 28, 2012 6:30 pm

I meet all the requirements to apply and get accepted into Central except for the attendance part. Do I have a chance?

Submitted by Anonymous on October 10, 2012 9:26 am

how is the school like how are the education rates

Submitted by Anonymous on October 19, 2012 10:52 am

My sister went to Central class of 269 and said she loved it. But how is it now?

Submitted by Anonymous on October 28, 2012 2:32 pm
For all those wondering about Central: I'm a student in the 273rd graduating class, I'm a Junior now and I have no regrets of attending this school. I've had the best teachers ever here, they are so helpful and prepare you for college. The school is challenging but help is always offered. The student body is very diverse and everyone has a place here. It is unlike any other student body I've seen. We're like a family here and we welcome everyone. This school helps you to grow overall, academically and a person. No other school in Pennsylvania can say the same . We have a new president at Central this year. But from what i know things are pretty much the same. When I first came in as a freshman I was told that your PSSA'S are of greatest importance when applying to Central. The school expects a lot from you so they will look at your academic history but there is no harm in applying. Take note that Central offers so many opportunities, once you are accepted, make sure you take advantage of them! Good Luck!!
Submitted by Anonymous on June 25, 2014 3:58 am
What if your coming from another state and did not take the pssa
Submitted by Anonymous on February 18, 2013 7:30 pm
What would be a better choice: Central, Carver HSES, Philadelphia High School for Girls, or Bodine? (I already know my chances of getting into my fifth school are slim... ^^')
Submitted by Anonymous on March 20, 2013 6:43 am

It's funny, when I look back, high school was probably the best time of my life, although it was also one of the most demanding one. Right after graduation I opted for online courses, there was less self-discipline required to get your degree and it was the best option for me to attend higher education programs while also keeping a full time job.

Submitted by Anonymous on April 11, 2013 8:14 pm
Im taking the pssa these days and i am very worried about my reading scores, but very confident about my math.i want to know that wat r the xhances of gettin into central with proficient in readin and advanced in math? Straight a's perfect attendance ?
Submitted by Anonymous on May 2, 2013 11:23 am
Submitted by Anonymous on August 6, 2013 11:26 pm
Submitted by Anonymous on August 6, 2013 11:46 pm
Submitted by Anonymous on August 6, 2013 11:21 pm
90210!!!! (I am from the future!).
Submitted by Anonymous on September 13, 2013 12:22 pm
I Have 1 C In Social Studies Can I Still Get In ?
Submitted by Anonymous on September 20, 2013 1:43 am
Well I definitely enjoyed reading it. This article provided by you is very helpful for accurate planning.
Submitted by Anonymous on July 11, 2014 4:59 am
Same for me. I'm not really good at SS OR SCI
Submitted by Anonymous on August 13, 2014 12:57 am
Probably, because they only look at Math and Reading :)
Submitted by Anonymous on September 23, 2013 7:42 pm
276 just started, its alright like some teachers are excellent and some suck, some teachers care about you while others dont give a crap, you have a lot of homework which is not hard but you have a lot. im up till like 1 or 2 in the morning still doing hw and studying. you have to study a lot because most teachers have daily quizzes and lots of tests and assignments. lunch is awesome and relaxing, if you have all a's through middle school and study a lot this is a good school for you but dont be upset the first quarter when you get a B or a bad grade because you have so much work and no time. you wont have a social life for a while but thats ok. you really have to try here but dont stress yourself out like me. its only the first few weeks so im not really sure how i LIKE this school yet because i came from a charter school, which was renovated nice, and the teachers really teached. the curriculum here is much harder and this school is totally worth it because its a challenge and it prepares you for college more than any other school will. but im just letting you know that you wont get a lot of sleep the first month at chs.
Submitted by Anonymous on November 21, 2013 11:51 am
Submitted by Anonymous on December 3, 2013 9:42 am
I applied for Central for 9th grade but didn't get accepted because of my attendance. I was at online school and then transferred back to public school, but when I went back to public school the online school had me still enrolled there and they counted that as I missed school for a week. I really care about my grades and I don't like getting B's. I'm the type to put in full effort for the first few months but then I get tired of the same routine after a while and become lazy. I always get all A's (sometimes one B and I get really mad at that) and middle to high advanced in all subjects on the PSSA, but that's because I had teachers that taught really well and would take the time to explain things or go back in the lesson if one or more of the students didn't understand something. I was wondering if Central had teachers that cared enough to at least explain things over if a student didn't understand something. I also read that the students there can be bullies and I've even had one of the workers there who used to work at my middle school tell me that as well. I wanted to reapply for 10th grade, though I wanted to go in 9th just to get the feel of things first. I'm more or so worried about failing because it may be too hard and there won't be anyone to help if I don't understand something. Right now I attend Franklin Learning Center and their teachers are really nice and helpful and will even extend deadlines if you don't have something completed just yet. But I feel as though FLC is too laid back and their care-free nature makes the school too easy. I want a challenge but I also want to have teachers or people there that will care and help me if and when I fall behind.
Submitted by Anonymous on February 5, 2014 9:48 pm
i have 2 C's in writing and in ell or i dont know i think its called that but i was wondering if i could get in with 2 c's
Submitted by Anonymous on February 11, 2014 9:56 pm
I am advanced in reading and math(pssa) All A's but I missed 7 days. Do I have a chance of getting in. I wanna go so bad.
Submitted by Anonymous on February 11, 2014 9:28 pm
I am advanced in reading and math(pssa) All A's but I missed 7 days. Do I have a chance of getting in. I wanna go so bad.
Submitted by Anonymous on March 12, 2014 8:30 pm
wow. im put on the waitlist for 2014-15. is 130 the correct wait list number? is there anywhere for me to check the number i am for the wait list?
Submitted by Anonymous on March 28, 2014 1:33 am
CHS 239 excellent prep for college and adult. Chased girls @ Girls High since we were an all boy school during my years.
Submitted by Anonymous on March 29, 2014 8:28 pm
What is the maximum amount of days can they allow you to have in elementary and still get accepted? Because I really want to go in but I'm afraid that my attendance will affect my chances!
Submitted by Anonymous on April 22, 2014 2:49 pm
I had all straight A's through middle school and i have all straight A's here too, its possible if you are determined and work hard. You will make great friends. Really prepares you for college. However, some kids just give up or stop trying. The first semester 21 kids got all A's out of 700 freshman. Join clubs. You definitely will get in if both your PSSA'S are advanced and your report card has all A's. If you dont have this get some recommendations from ur middle school teachers. Read the summer books very closely while taking notes on every chapter because you will have detailed tests. Its not that bad after you get used to the system.
Submitted by Anonymous on April 22, 2014 2:12 pm
Go 276!!!!!!!!!!!!
Submitted by Anonymous on May 4, 2014 5:39 pm
This is a great school .- a great institution. I hope that it retains some sort of racial and ethnic balance that reflects to some degree - not based on quotas of course- the diversity of our city and of the school district. In San Francisco and in New York, the special admit schools have become overwhelmingly Asian-American.- which was not a good thing I do not think that such an imbalance would be good for Central HS nor for racial relations in the city as a whole.
Submitted by Anonymous on May 6, 2014 12:17 pm
i am not in high school yet but i like central my family went the when they were in high school and i am going there in two years and u might my brother Daniel Chavez so have fun for summer brake and u will see me in two years and i am a fun girl :}@<~<~<~ so yeh and have fun oh my name is Elianna CHAVEZ
Submitted by Anonymous on May 7, 2014 11:22 am
what does it take to graduate. I am not even in high school but i am already needing planning. is a 4.0 good enough
Submitted by Anonymous on May 7, 2014 11:04 am
I see a bunch of music, but are there dance class? If not that would be something to add to this school.
Submitted by Anonymous on July 5, 2014 7:41 pm
I have As, Bs and proficient in reading and basic in math almost proficient can I get in
Submitted by Anonymous on August 1, 2014 1:46 pm

I had such a bad experience at Central High School. I just graduated this June, and I am so happy to be leaving Central behind. If you like being tested and quizzed everyday for four years and having teachers who are openly cruel and love to give F's then maybe Central is for you. Every year I had at least one teacher who was a complete jerk. My algebra teacher insulted students in class and harassed girls. One girl asked him what the answer to a question was and he said I'll tell you if you give me a kiss. My chemistry teacher would call on students who were confused and wait for them to give him a correct answer when they couldn't. He would just stand there and stare at them. Many of my peers dreaded going to his class. He failed 10 students in my class, and gave 7 students D's. My physics teacher told my class we were retarded and said many of us wouldn't do much in life. My biology teacher told stories of his ex-wife, and talked about disciplining (beating) his children.

Even if your teachers at Central aren't dirtbags like mine were, they will make it almost impossible for you to do well. At Central, getting an A is almost impossible. If teachers give too many students A's, they get in trouble with the administration, who come in and visit their class to make sure it's not too easy. If teachers give many students F's, no one comes to visit. The administration thinks this means a class is challenging and up to Central's standards. Sorry for my rant, but I just needed to talk about my experience while everyone else is heaping praise on a school that doesn't deserve it.

Submitted by Anonymous on September 10, 2014 11:16 pm

I'm a parent of a 8th grader who is encouraging my son to apply to Central, however I'm disappointed by some of these reviews. I want him to be challenged and appropriately prepared for a good college. At the same time, I would hate for him to fail or be left behind becuase he's overwhelmed. He's currently in a small private school and although he has maintained A's and B's, I'm still concerned about how well he will transition to such a large overwhelming and demanding environment. Any recommendations would be appreciated. Thank you.

Submitted by Anonymous on September 18, 2014 4:35 pm

I am 276 at Central.  I came from a small private school where I had been since kindergarten.  I personally needed a change and I wanted a large public school.  If your kid is organized and motivated, he can do very well.  Really a lot depends on the teacher, obviously some are much better than others, but that goes for everywhere.  Being in the MG program last year was good because the teachers were very competent and there were assignments and projects that were outside of the box.  I would recommend Central, but it really depends on what type of learner and person your son is.

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