Specialized High Schools

Current eighth and ninth grade students who live in NYC can participate in Specialized High Schools admissions. Watch our video series to learn more, and scroll down for the latest information.

Happening Now for 2024 Admissions

  • Offers to 8th and 9th grade testers who participated in the November and December 2023 SHSAT administration will be available in early March.

Fall 2024 Admissions Timeline*

Below are the application open, close, and offer release dates. These dates are for students who are applying during the 2023-2024 school year for admission in the 2024-2025 school year.

  • Tuesday, October 3, 2023High School Application & Specialized High Schools Admissions Test (SHSAT) Registration Opens 
  • Friday, October 27, 2023: SHSAT Registration Closes 
  • Monday, November 6, 2023: Test Tickets released for SHSAT School Day Testers
  • Wednesday November 8, 2023: SHSAT School Day Testing
  • Week of November 13, 2023: Test Tickets released for Weekend Testers
  • Saturday November 18, 2023: SHSAT Weekend Testing (Day 1)
  • Sunday November 19, 2023: SHSAT Weekend Testing (Day 2)
  • Week of November 27, 2023: Test Tickets released for Late and Make up Registrants
  • Friday, December 1, 2023High School Application Closes; Deadline to submit LaGuardia Application; deadline to submit all additional materials in MySchools, including virtual auditions.
  • Sunday December 3, 2023: SHSAT Weekend Testing (Day 3)
  • Saturday December 9, 2023: SHSAT Weekend Testing (Day 4)
  • Thursday, March 7, 2024: Offer Release (HS Application, SHSAT, LaGuardia)

Sign up for our high school admissions email list: we'll send you updates, tips, and key date reminders. Learn more about any past or upcoming events at schools.nyc.gov/High.

New to NYC public schools and need a high school now? Learn what to do on our New Students page.

What Are the Specialized High Schools?

The nine Specialized High Schools are one way that New York City supports the educational needs of students who excel academically and/or artistically, including English Language Learners and students with an IEP or 504 Plan.

Who Can Apply?

Everyone eligible to apply to high school is also eligible to apply to the Specialized High Schools. To register to audition and/or schedule the SHSAT and to get your audition or test results, a student must be both of the following:

  • A NYC resident
  • A current eighth grade student or first-time (not repeating the grade) ninth grade student

Please note: To submit a LaGuardia application or register for the SHSAT, families must connect their child to their MySchools account. Alternatively, school staff and our Family Welcome Center Staff can support families with this process.

One Audition High School—Submit your Application and Auditions to Apply

Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts is the audition Specialized High School, where students complete two parallel paths of study: conservatory-level pre-professional training in the arts and college-preparatory academics. Students can apply to LaGuardia by submitting a portfolio and auditioning in a talent area for up to six different studios:

  • Fine & Visual Art
  • Vocal Music
  • Instrumental Music
  • Dance
  • Drama
  • Technical Theater

LaGuardia High School also considers students' academic records. More information can be found on our Audition page. Visit the LaGuardia High School's website to learn about the school.

Eight Testing High Schools—Take the SHSAT to Apply

The remaining eight Specialized High Schools use a test to determine who can attend, the Specialized High Schools Admissions Test (SHSAT). During the registration period, you can indicate your preference order for the testing Specialized High Schools (see below) and submit your registration. You are then considered for an offer to these schools by taking the Specialized High Schools Admissions Test (SHSAT). You can find the schools listed below:

  • The Bronx High School of Science
  • The Brooklyn Latin School
  • Brooklyn Technical High School
  • High School for Mathematics, Science and Engineering at City College of New York
  • High School of American Studies at Lehman College
  • Queens High School for the Sciences at York College
  • Staten Island Technical High School
  • Stuyvesant High School

Note: The SHSAT is not used to determine admissions to LaGuardia High School. Admission to LaGuardia High School is based on auditions. Applicants do not list LaGuardia High School programs or any testing Specialized High Schools on your high school application; these schools use a separate admissions process.

Learn About Schools

Some schools offer virtual or in-person open houses and other opportunities to learn about them. You can go to the MySchools Events Calendar to see more about open houses. Use the filter to select Specialized High School and LaGuardia. Each school’s events will be listed on their directory page. Click on the event to learn more and rsvp, if needed.

Test dates and locations

  • Students testing at their current school: November 8
  • 8th grade testers registered by October 27: November 18/19
  • 9th grade students and all late and make up registrants: December 3/9

List of SHSAT Testing Locations

Students who take the SHSAT will be considered for admission to the testing Specialized High Schools listed on their SHSAT registration. Please review how offers to the testing Specialized High Schools are determined at schools.nyc.gov/SHS.

SHSAT results will be available in March 2024 when offer letters are released.

Your child’s test ticket will show their test date and location. Test tickets will be available for registered students after the registration deadline. Please see below for the test dates and locations.

Registered 8th grade students who attend charter, private, parochial, continuing schools (6-12 or K-12), or independent school schools, or who are homeschooledCentral DOE locationSaturday, November 18 or Sunday, November 19

All registered 9th grade students

All late and make up registrants

Central DOE locationSunday, December 3 or Saturday, December 9

Central DOE Locations for Students Testing on a Weekend Date

LocationAddressStudents Testing on a Weekend Dates
Stuyvesant High School (02M475) 345 Chambers St, New York, NY 10280Students who attend school in Districts 1, 2, 3, and 4
Mott Hall High School (05M304)6 Edgecombe Ave 4th floor, New York, NY 10030Students who attend school in Districts 5 and 6
The Bronx High School of Science (10X445)75 W 205th St, Bronx, NY 10468Students who attend school in Districts 7, 8, 9 ,10, 11, and 12
Brooklyn Technical High School (13K430)29 Fort Greene Pl, Brooklyn, NY 11217 Students who attend school in Districts 13, 14, 15, 16, 19, 23, and 32
James Madison High School (22K425)3787 Bedford Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11229Students who attend school in Districts 17,18, 20, 21, and 22
Long Island City High School (30Q450)14-30 Broadway, Queens, NY 11106Students who attend school in Districts 24 and 30
Hillcrest High School (28Q505)160-05 Highland Ave, Queens, NY 11432Students who attend school in Districts 25, 26, 27, 28, and 29
Staten Island Technical High School (31R605)485 Clawson St, Staten Island, NY 10306Students who attend school in Staten Island (District 31)

Diversity Initiatives

Our goal is that students in Specialized High Schools reflect the diversity of New York City. The Specialized High Schools Diversity Initiatives aim to increase testing, offer, and acceptance rates for high-potential students in underrepresented communities.

DREAM Program

DREAM (Determination, Resiliency, Enthusiasm, Ambition, Motivation) is an extracurricular academic program that prepares eligible New York City public school students for the SHSAT. Learn if you might be eligible to participate.

Discovery Program

The Discovery Programs are summer enrichment programs for rising 9th-graders from low-income backgrounds and schools who take the SHSAT and score right below the cutoff. Students who complete the program successfully can enroll in a Specialized High School in September. In the spring, after you take the test, we will contact you if you’re eligible to participate in a Discovery program. Discovery programs are for rising ninth grade students who take the SHSAT and score below the cutoff score. Learn more about this program and eligibility requirements on our Discovery Admissions pag

Accommodations for the SHSAT and LaGuardia High School Auditions

About Testing Accommodations 

The purpose of testing accommodations is to allow students with disabilities and limited English proficiency to participate in assessments on equal basis with their peers. Testing accommodations provide the opportunity for eligible students to demonstrate mastery of skills and knowledge without being limited or unfairly restricted due to the effects of a disability or language proficiency.

Accommodations for LaGuardia High School auditions and/or the SHSAT are provided based on a student's existing testing accommodations. If applicable, these are documented on your IEP or 504 Plan and/or based on your ELL status.

The following students are eligible to receive testing and/or audition accommodations on LaGuardia High School auditions and the SHSAT:

  • Students with disabilities (SWDs) who have IEPs or 504 Plans that include testing accommodations
  • Current English Language Learners (ELLs)
  • Former ELLs who achieved proficiency on the New York State English as a Second Language Achievement Test (NYSESLAT) in 2021 and/or 2022.

Please note:

  • Accommodations requested only for LaGuardia High School Auditions and/or the SHSAT are not allowed. Students must demonstrate a documented history or needing and using testing accommodations.
  • Students with 504 Plans must have their accommodations approved every year. Schools and families must review (and approve, if appropriate) the student's 2022-2023 504 Plan no later than the last day of school in June 2022. Learn more about 504 Plans on the 504 accommodations page.
  • Some testing accommodations are not needed for LaGuardia auditions and the SHSAT. There are some accommodations that students may use on other tests that may not be needed for the SHSAT. For example, students who use a computer or other device for tests with essays will not need to use this accommodation on the SHSAT because there are no essays on the test.
  • Some accommodations are not permitted for LaGuardia auditions and/or the SHSAT. Students with existing accommodations will receive them unless a particular accommodation interferes with the content or skill being measured by the audition or test. In such cases, no students will receive this accommodation. For example:
    • Students are not permitted to use calculators and/or math tables on the Math section of the SHSAT because this section of the test measures students' mathematical computation skills.
    • Oral interpretation and written translation of the SHSAT directions, questions, and answers are not permitted because this changes the standardization of the test. (ELLs who need translations are permitted to use the bilingual math glossaries provided by the testing site on the Math section of the SHSAT only)

Tip: Work with your school counselor to ask about testing accommodations or specific situations that may not be addressed in this guide. Any approved accommodations will appear on your audition or test ticket.

Accommodations for English Language Learners (ELLs)

ELLs and eligible former ELLs taking the SHSAT are granted extended testing time totaling 360 minutes (2x standard testing time) as well as two 15-minute breaks after the first 180 minutes of testing. The extended time is calculated from the start time of the SHSAT, not the arrival to the testing site.

Bilingual math glossaries will also be provided on the day of the SHSAT at each test administration site in Arabic, Bengali/Bangla, Chinese (Traditional and Simplified), French, Haitian Creole, Korean, Russian, Spanish, and Urdu. Students are not permitted to bring their own bilingual math glossaries.

Tip: You can review sample bilingual glossaries on the SHSAT website.

Accommodations for Students with IEPS or 504 Plans

Students with disabilities (SWD) will be provided with the accommodations listed in their IEPs or 504 Plans unless a specific accommodation is not needed or permitted when taking the SHSAT, as detailed in the beginning of this section. 

  • If your IEP or 504 Plan includes the use of assistive technology such as Frequency Modulation (FM) Unit or other aids, such as masks, markers, highlighters, pencil grip, slant board, or a magnifying glass, you must bring these with you on the day of the SHSAT and/or audition if needed. The test or audition sites will not provide these aids.
  • If you have a scribe on your IEP or 504 Plan, it is important to discuss with your school counselor and work with your IEP or 504 team to determine what you need on the SHSAT and to make sure the accommodation is listed on your IEP or 504 as well as your test ticket.
    • Students who require a scribe: You will need a scribe if you are unable to circle your answers in the test booklet. Students who require a scribe on testing day will have the test administered individually.
    • Students who do not need a scribe: If you are able to circle answers in the test booklet, you will be provided with the "Answers Recorded in the Test Booklet" accommodation. In this case, the proctor will assist you with transcribing the answers from the test booklet onto the answer sheet at the conclusion of the test.

SHSAT Administration for Students with Extended Time

All students taking the SHSAT must stay in testing rooms for the entire standard test administration time (180 minutes), with the exception of using the bathroom.

Once the standard test administration time (180 minutes) is over, students with an accommodation of extended time may leave if they have finished working on the exam. Students that decide to leave after the first 180 minutes of the standard test administration time must sign out to indicate they understood they gave up their remaining available time on the SHSAT. Students with this accommodation will have a break at the conclusion of the 180 minutes, and then again after another 90 minutes have passed. If a parent or guardian does not want their child to leave before the full amount of extended time period has ended, the parent/guardian is responsible for communicating this to their child before the test begins. Retests will not be provided to students who choose to leave before the end of their extended time.

How to Confirm or Request Testing Accommodations

During the SHSAT and audition registration period, your current DOE, charter, or non-public (private or parochial) school is responsible for entering and/or confirming the appropriate testing accommodations in MySchools.

  • If you have a 504 Plan or attend a charter or non-public (private or parochial) school and have a similar school-based accommodation plan, all documentation must be submitted to the DOE for review at least three weeks before the registration deadline.
    • Documentation received after this deadline may not be reviewed in time for the student's scheduled test date. 
    • Contact your current school counselor with questions about accommodations on the SHSAT.
  • Non-public school students (who attend private or parochial schools) requesting accommodations during their LaGuardia auditions must work with their school counselor to enter and/or confirm accommodations. Please note that neither parents/guardians nor school staff should send accommodations directly to LaGuardia High School.
    • Accommodations must be reviewed and approved before audition tickets are available. 
    • Approved accommodations for LaGuardia High School auditions must appear on students' audition tickets.
  • Non-public school students with disabilities (SWDs) (who attend private or parochial schools) who do not have an IEP or 504 Plan indicating their need for testing accommodations must work with their school counselors to complete a Request for Accommodations form and submit the form and supporting documentation to the DOE for review and approval by the deadline provided.
    • Parents/guardians can get this form from your current school.
    • Your school counselor is responsible for submitting the form by the required date. The DOE may need additional information about how your accommodations were determined and will verify the documented history and need for requested accommodations.

How to Opt Out of Accommodations

If you are an ELL and/or have an IEP or 504 Plan but your parents/guardians wish to opt out of accommodations for the SHSAT or LaGuardia auditions, please contact your school counselor. School counselors will work with parents/guardians to complete the Accommodations Opt-Out Form for SHSAT and LaGuardia Auditions. Neither school counselors nor students may opt out of testing/audition accommodations without parent/guardian consent; written consent by a parent/guardian is required. 

  • If it is not possible to provide written consent to opt out of testing accommodations before the registration deadline, parents/guardians must provide their written consent on the test or audition day to opt out of the testing accommodations listed on their child’s ticket.
  • On testing or audition day, students cannot modify or opt out of the testing accommodations listed on their ticket unless parent/guardian consent has been provided in writing on the test or audition ticket.

How to Request Emergency Accommodations

Students who demonstrate disabilities or temporary impairments within 30 days of the SHSAT may request certain emergency testing accommodations, if approved by the principal of the student's current school. Emergency testing accommodations are intended for use by students whose disabilities or injuries occur after the registration deadline but before their scheduled testing/audition day and without enough time to develop an IEP or 504 Plan.

If you need emergency accommodations for the SHSAT and/or LaGuardia auditions, your family should work with a school counselor to complete the Emergency Testing Request form and ask the counselor to alert the DOE as soon as possible that emergency accommodations may be needed—this must be communicated prior to the testing day or audition day. If a family requests an accommodation without giving the DOE sufficient time to review the request before your standard SHSAT administration date or before the child’s audition date, the student’s test or audition may be rescheduled to ensure that your request for accommodations can be properly reviewed.

Tip: Review the New York City Department of Education’s resources on testing accommodations for additional information on the testing accommodations page.

Guide to the SHSAT for Students Entering High School in Fall 2024

To Prepare for the SHSAT:

SHSAT Practice Test for 2024 Admissions

For your convenience, you can use a standalone practice test to prepare to take the SHSAT for 2024 admissions.

Specialized High Schools Admissions Test (SHSAT) Practice Test for 2024 Admissions

You can also find the practice test as part of the NYC Guide to the SHSAT for 2024 Admissions by scrolling to the bottom of this page.

How Do Students Get Offers to the Testing Specialized High Schools? 

Offers to the eight testing Specialized High Schools are based on each student's SHSAT score, school preference order, and the number of seats at each school. These offers are made to each school in descending SHSAT score order until all seats at each school are filled.

Below is the lowest SHSAT score that resulted in a ninth-grade offer at each school for fall 2023. The lowest qualifying score changes each year based on students’ preferences and SHSAT scores, so students who are testing for a different year should not use these scores to determine their chances of an offer to any of the schools. 

Offers to the testing Specialized High Schools are made in descending order of SHSAT score, combined with each student’s preferences listed on their SHSAT registration. Here’s how that works:

The student with the highest SHSAT score receives an offer to their first choice school. The student with the next highest SHSAT score receives an offer to their first choice school. This continues student by student in downward score order until a student’s first-choice school does not have any remaining seats. That student is then considered for their second-choice school. If there are remaining seats at the second-choice school, that student receives an offer there. If the second-choice school has no remaining seats, that student is considered for their third-choice school, and so on. This continues until all seats at all Specialized High Schools have been filled.

If a student doesn’t get an offer to their first-choice school, it is because all seats at that school have been filled by students with higher SHSAT scores. Similarly, if a student gets an offer to a non-first choice school, it is because all seats at schools they listed higher have been filled by students with higher SHSAT scores (e.g., if a student gets an offer to their fourth-choice school, then seats at their first to third-choice schools are filled with higher scoring students.)

If a student doesn’t get any offer to a testing Specialized High School, it is because all seats at all the schools they listed on their SHSAT registration are filled by students with higher SHSAT scores. Students are not considered for offers to schools that are not listed on their SHSAT registration. 

The SHSAT is the only criteria used to admit students to the eight testing Specialized High Schools; no other criteria are used.

The table above shows the lowest qualifying score that resulted in an offer to each testing Specialized High School this year. This means that any student with a SHSAT score lower than one listed on the table did not get an offer to that school. The lowest score to result in an offer changes each year based on that SHSAT scores and preferences of the pool of testers for that specific SHSAT administration 

You can view our video How Students Get Offers to the Eight Testing Specialized High Schools detailing the process. 

Get Your Results

There are three ways to get your SHSAT results:

These results include:

  • Your child's SHSAT score
  • Up to one offer to a testing Specialized High School
  • Not all students who took the SHSAT will get an offer to a testing Specialized High School, and the Specialized High Schools do not have waitlists.

Offer Letters

High school offers are available in the spring after the high school application closes.

High School Application Results Include

  • Up to one offer to a program from the high school application process
  • Up to one offer to a program from the SHSAT, if applicable 
  • Up to one offer to each program a student auditioned at Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School, if applicable
  • Detailed information about the waitlist process, including a list of programs where you are automatically waitlisted, if applicable—learn more in your offer letter or on our Waitlists page. All high school programs (except for the Specialized High Schools) have waitlists.


2024 NYC Public Schools Admissions Guide 

View or download the 2024 NYC Public Schools Admissions Guide! This book provides an overview of admissions processes and resources for Infants and Toddlers programs, 3-K, Pre-K, Kindergarten, Gifted and Talented (G&T) programs, middle school, and high school (including Specialized High Schools), including a section on how to use MySchools.

Print copies will be available in 10 languages at schools, early childhood programs, libraries, and other sites throughout September.

NYC Guide to the SHSAT for 2024 Admissions

View or download the NYC Guide to the SHSAT for 2024 Admissions! This book provides an overview of how to prepare to take the Specialized High Schools Admissions Test (SHSAT) and includes practice tests.

Print copies of one practice test are available in 10 languages at middle schools and other sites.

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