Fort Hamilton High School

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Virginia Izzo, Assistant Principal


Fort Hamilton High School’s English department is committed to engaging and meeting the needs of all students.  We strive to maintain a wide variety of courses ranging from the traditional survey to interdisciplinary, honors, a balanced literacy program and elective courses.  Our approach is based on flexibility, response to student aspirations and goals, with emphasis on the highest standards of scholastic excellence.


To qualify for graduation, students are required to successfully complete eight terms of English and to pass the English Language Arts Common Core Regents exam given in junior year.  All instruction is aligned to Common Core Standards and adapted from NYS EngageNY curriculum.  Students may opt to study the genre of Drama in the freshman and sophomore year and participate in the Performing Arts.

All classes emphasize a workshop approach to acquiring college level skills in reading and writing, as evidenced in a portfolio of narrative, argumentative, creative and research-based writing.  All ELA and ESL instruction is aligned to the NYS Common Core curriculum and the NYC Chancellor’s Instructional Expectations.  A Humanities-based honors program, culminating in Advanced Placement Language is offered in the junior year, and Advanced Placement Literature is offered in the senior year, as well as selectives such as: College and Career Writing; Film and History; Film and Literature; The History of the Theater; The Immigrant Experience; Journalism; The Language of Shakespeare; Literature of the Holocaust; New York in Literature and electives such as ELA College Aptitude (SAT and College Prep), and Public Speaking.  Recent immigrant students who are not native speakers have the opportunity to take an elective, Communication Arts, in addition to English, to further develop proficiency in reading, writing and speaking English.  All seniors who have completed the English Regents requirement have the opportunity to take a selective in the Senior year, in place of English 7 and 8 in order to be college and career ready. Seniors are also offered the Library Research Seminar as an elective to enhance research skills.


Co-curricular activities include: The Anchor, our literary-art magazine; The Pilot, our school newspaper; and the Shakespeare Oratory Festival.