Admission FAQS

General

525 E. Houston Street, New York, NY, 10002

No, Bard High School Early College is not a private school. It is a public early college high school operated through a partnership between Bard College and the New York City Department of Education for New York City residents.

No. While BHSEC Manhattan shares some characteristics with charter schools, such as autonomy in hiring administrators and faculty, BHSEC Manhattan operates as a partnership between Bard College and the local public school system. As a college, BHSEC does not use a lottery-based admissions process. BHSEC is governed by a Memorandum of Understanding between Bard College and the NYC DoE.

No, Bard High School Early College is not a specialized school. However, BHSEC is a selective school and all students who apply must meet all of our criteria to be considered for admission.

Through a Memorandum of Understanding between Bard College and the NYC DoE, BHSEC Manhattan shapes its curriculum, first and foremost, as a rigorous course of study in the liberal arts and sciences that meets Bard College requirements for a general education during the first two years of college. While students take local standardized assessments, those assessments do not drive the Bard curriculum or the material taught in the classroom; to the extent possible, state and local required assessments are given during the 9th and 10th grades so that they do not interfere with the associate in arts degree curriculum taught in the 11th and 12th grades. Students have choice over courses within the academic disciplines offered at Bard: Division of the Arts, Division of Languages and Literature, Division of Mathematics and Sciences, and Division of Social Sciences. Our course catalogue is available here.

The Bard High School Early College model allows all enrolled students the opportunity to earn an associate in arts degree from Bard College, worth approximately 60 transferable credits, completely free of charge. This saves students and their families up to two years of college tuition, fees, and related costs.  While there are additional costs of providing a college program in high school, Bard relies on funding from public and private sources to ensure that costs are not passed on to students and families. 

For general information about Bard Early College, click here.

Admissions

New York City residents. Please check our admissions criteria.

Register for our assessment online at www.bard.edu/bhsec. You may take the exam at our Manhattan or Queens campus. Fill out the NYC Department of Education (DOE) Application for Admission to High School. Bring a copy of your final 7th grade report card to the assessment (8th grade report card if you are applying to 10th grade). Select students are invited to return for an interview.

The application is available in your MySchools account. You may also get this form from your middle school guidance counselor. Private and parochial school students.should ask their guidance counselor or high school placement counselor for assistanc.

The code for the Manhattan campus is M51A and the Code for the Queens campus is Q74B.

You will only need to fill out the assessment registration and take the assessment once. However, you need to indicate on your assessment that you are applying to both schools in order to be considered for both. You must also list BHSEC Manhattan and BHSEC Queens as two separate choices on your DOE High School Application.

There are two parts to the assessment: a math section which assesses the student’s current math level, and an essay writing section based on a selected reading. Applicants are given one and a half hours to complete the entire assessment. There are no test preparation materials for this assessment.

You may only take the assessment once during the academic school year. Students may take an assessment at either location to apply to the Manhattan campus, the Queens campus, or both. Students should choose the site that is most convenient for taking the assessment and for attending an interview. If applying to both campuses, students only need to take the exam one time.

After review of the report card and the assessment exam, students who seem most likely to flourish at BHSEC are invited for an interview. We usually interview students 3 to 5 weeks after they have taken the assessment. The interview process begins in early to mid-October and can go as late as January, depending on the applicant pool. Students who are not invited for an interview are not being considered for admission. Students not being considered for admission will be notified by email. FOR THE 2020-2021 WE DID NOT HAVE INTERVIEWS.

Official notification of acceptance to all New York City public high schools is sent by the Department of Education to the middle school guidance counselors and to each student’s MY SCHOOLS account. The notification is usually sent out in March. Check here https://www.schools.nyc.gov for more information.  FOR 2021: Families and middle schools will begin receiving High School Admissions Matches Friday, May 21, 2021 after 12pm. Check your MySchools account or contact your guidance counselor for assistance. You may also visit the NYC Department of Education website for more information.

Students who are not accepted to the 9th grade may reapply the following fall for the 10th grade. Students who are not accepted to the 10th grade are not eligible to reapply. As a cautionary note, however, very few 10th graders are admitted each year and the number admitted is dependent upon the number of students admitted into the previous 9th grade class.

You may apply; however, the majority of accepted students have over an 85% grade point average.

We will take medical issues into consideration. Please include a doctor’s note when you submit your report card.

We welcome students applying to 9th and 10th grades to visit our school during the scheduled open houses. Registration is required to attend.

Unfortunately, because we are a small school we can only register a maximum of 400 people for each event. Please be aware, we do not give admission priority to applicants who attend our events. It is best to register early.

Please do not. Our open houses are too full to accommodate anyone who shows up unannounced, so please do not come if you have not received a confirmation for an open house.

Yes. You are not required to visit the school to be considered for admission. We do not give preference to students who attend an open house.

On the website, you can find information about our mission, curriculum, faculty, college office, extra-curricular activities, admissions, and much more. In addition, representatives from our school will be at the DOE city wide and borough wide fairs in the fall. Check the DOE website for additional information.

The DOE system will match students and programs/schools: a student will be matched to only the highest choice school which also accepted that student to its program. Thus, students will not be notified of their acceptance or denial to all 12 schools; they will only know about their highest choice school to which they have been matched. Click here for more information on the DOE high school admission process. We will consider all qualified students regardless of where they rank BHSEC. However, if a student is serious about applying to BHSEC, we encourage her or him to place BHSEC at the top of her or his DOE priority list. It is also important that students meet the DOE’s admissions deadlines. BHSEC cannot consider any student for admissions who does not apply through the DOE and satisfies its application guidelines.

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