Queens, one of the five boroughs that make up New York City, was once known best for the classic TV show All in the Family, which debuted in 1971 with producer Norman Lear. Today, Queens has moved beyond its Archie Bunker reputation and is one of the most ethnically diverse areas in the world. About forty-six percent of its 2.2 million residents are foreign-born, and they represent over 100 countries. Queens is also home to a number of private schools. This list concentrates on non-parochial schools, though the borough is also home to a number of Catholic, Jewish, and Muslim schools:.
Garden School, in Jackson Heights, was founded in 1923. Today, it educates 325 boys and girls in nursery school through 12th grade. Its philosophy reads as follows: "Garden School, in the independent tradition, affirms the primacy of learning. We empower every student in our educationally diverse community to meet responsibly the challenges of everyday life by promoting academic achievement, personal development and social involvement." The school also has an English Language Academy for international students in grades 7-10. After one year in the academy, they enter the mainstream school. The school's grounds include a renovated library and an outdoor pool. The tuition is lower than that of many New York City private schools; in 2011-2012, the school cost $15,500. Students, who enjoy a 10:1 student-to-faculty ratio, come from Queens, Brooklyn, and Manhattan.
Kew Forest School
The Kew Forest School, located in Forest Hills, is a 1-12 co-ed school founded in 1918. Its student body is multi-national, and about 62% of the students have parents from another country. Students trace their roots to 65 countries. The tuition for the lower school is about $26,275, and the tuition for the high school is $30,500. Twenty-eight percent of students receive need-based financial aid. Its students attend Ivy League and other top colleges.
The Lowell School, founded in 1968, is a co-ed school that is approved by New York state to accept children who have been classified as learning disabled, speech impaired, other health impaired, or emotionally disturbed. In the school's words, "Our goal is to close the gap between a child's potential and his/her day-to-day performance. An emphasis is placed on developing self-respect, responsibility and building character." The school has a 12:1:1 student-to-teacher ratio.
The Summit School is a school founded in 1968 for children who have learning or adjustment needs. In its own words, "It is the mission of The Summit School community to help children with special needs acquire the skills to achieve success in higher education, job placements, and interpersonal relationships. As members of a supportive and nurturing community, our students maximize their strengths, develop self-esteem, and become contributing members of society." The school educates 300 students in grades 3-12. Students who are 14 and older can participate in the Work-Based Learning Program to experience different work settings.
UNIS, or the United Nations International School based in Manhattan and founded in 1947, also has a campus in Queens for 200 students from kindergarten through grade 8. Students can then transfer to the Manhattan campus for high school if they wish. The school is located in Jamaica Estates and provides an education that emphasis international understanding for the children of families associated with the United Nations as well as other families.
Whitestone Academy, founded in 1981, is a small school of about 125 boys and girls located in Whitestone, Queens. Its mission is, in its own words, as follows: "The Whitestone Academy provides an education that is marked by individual attention, a close-knit, talented, and diverse community of students, parents, teachers and administrators, all collaborating in the education that provides each student with the opportunity to maximize his or her potential. Our goal is to foster a climate of mutual respect, nurture personal growth and instill a lifelong appreciation of education." The school also welcomes international students.
The Windsor School, a co-ed 6-12 school in Flushing founded in 1969, offers a pre-college program. It also offers international students an English as a Second Language program in addition to the traditional program of study and prepares them to enter U.S. colleges.