In Long Beach, middle school families have many choices for what high schools they can apply. These choices include almost 40 LBUSD school options, private schools, and one charter school, Intellectual Virtues Academy High School. It takes both knowledge and attention to make the appropriate choice for your child and we want to partner with our IVA families in making this decision. In this webpage we offer more information about Academy and LBUSD options.
Intellectual Virtues Academy High School:
As you know, IVA is recognized for its research-based, intellectually challenging and supportive academic program. In the fall of 2016, the Academy began extending the intellectual virtues education model to the high school, equipping every student to think well: critically, creatively, and with a capacity for self-growth.
The Academy invites you to learn more and experience the high school firsthand at one of the upcoming open house events or school tours, which are tracked on our HS CHOICE calendar here. You can find valuable open house and school tour information on the newly launched Academy website, www.academylongbeach.org. If you are interested in completing an application for the 2017-2018 school year, you may complete an online application here or you may request a paper copy of the application by calling the Academy front office at (562) 283-4456. Read a summary of instructions for applying to the academy here: Academy-Process-for-Enrollment.pdf
Academy students are equipped with the knowledge, skills, and “habits of mind” needed for success in college, careers, and beyond! The Academy Team looks forward to getting to know your family as your child transitions into high school.
Comprehensive High Schools vs. Small Thematic High Schools
There are 11 schools to choose from within LBUSD: 6 comprehensive high schools (Cabrillo, Jordan, Lakewood, Millikan, Poly, and Wilson) and 5 small, thematic high schools (CAMS, McBride, Renaissance, Sato, Browning). Comprehensive high schools typically have a large student population (2,500-4,000 students), offer a wide variety of classes, athletic team programs, and specialized/traditional small learning communities. Attendance boundaries also allow for residential priority, meaning students who apply to schools outside their neighborhood would be put further down the list for admission. Small thematic high schools tend to have smaller student populations (400-1,200 students), offer a limited menu of class options, and limited or no athletic team opportunities. Though this may be the case, there are no attendance boundaries, meaning students who live outside of the region can apply with no priority given to neighborhood families. We strongly encourage our 8th grade families to research thoroughly the right high school for your student.
Small Learning Communities and Secondary Specialized Programs
All students in LBUSD High Schools belong to a Small Learning Community or Secondary Specialized Program. For information on the selection methodology of these options, see the handouts at the bottom of this page. Most SLC's / Pathways integrate rigorous academic instruction with demanding technical proficiencies and field-based learning--all set in the context of one of California's 15 major industry sectors. Others focus on blending the rigorous academics with technical proficiencies common to all industry sectors.
Small Learning Communities (SLCs)
There are 16 options of SLCs at the six comprehensive high schools. See more on the LBUSD website. In these SLC's, there are no admission requirements. Residential priority is placed first* and remaining seats are assigned by lottery.
*Residential priority is not guaranteed (Poly is a great example because there are more students in the residential neighborhood than spots at the school), but they are generally honored if a student selects a small learning community at their home high school first on the residential selection screen.
Secondary Specialized Programs (SSPs)
Specialized programs can have competitive admissions processes, which is an option for each program. Most specialized programs have minimum admission criteria that can be a blend of state test scores and 6th and 7th grade marks - this is called the High School Academic Index. Some schools also require 8th grade Algebra I credit (check the Qualifying Criteria attachment below to understand the requirements of the schools that interests you). Students are selected to these programs by rank but if the programs are oversubscribed the program chooses the selection method. To learn more about selection methods see the last column of the Qualifying Criteria handout below.
Helpful Handouts for Families:
HS Choice Information? We have a mobile app for that!