Stuyvesant High School and the other seven specialized high schools are public high schools established and run by the New York City Department of Education to serve the needs of academically gifted students. New York State Education Law makes a written examination the only requirement for admission to these schools. Places are awarded to those students who earn the highest scores on the entrance exam, the Specialized High Schools Admission Test.
Although each of the specialized high schools has its own unique features, Stuyvesant emphasizes mathematics, science and technology education. Stuyvesant also offers many intriguing electives and a wide range of advanced placement courses. Of course, Stuyvesant also offers all the basic New York State required academic courses that each student needs for success in college and beyond. Enrichment courses are available in the Humanities. The exciting and academically challenging atmosphere of the specialized high schools stimulates both the students and the teachers.
The New York City Specialized High Schools admission test (SHSAT) is offered to all eighth and ninth grade students residing within the five boroughs of New York City who wish to attend Stuyvesant or any of the other specialized high schools. The same exam is given for all eight schools, and students who qualify will be offered a seat in one of their choices. The qualifying score depends upon the number of seats available and the scores of all the candidates. The tests are graded and are arranged in order of rank, from the highest to the lowest score. Each school has a number of freshman and sophomore seats to fill. Seats are filled starting with the highest test scores. When all available seats have been filled, the cutoff mark is determined.
Students who miss the cutoff of their first choice school may be assigned to their second choice school if their score is above the cutoff for that school. This procedure continues until all seats in the specialized high schools have been filled.
It is required that students take the exam at the designated school in their borough. Applications for the exam and information about all the specialized high schools are available at all New York City schools serving eighth and ninth graders. The SHSAT is administered early in October of each school year. Students are notified of their acceptance into one of the specialized high schools the following February.