Shaler Area High School

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Shaler Area High School
381 Wible Run Road
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 15209
United States
Established 1971
School district Shaler Area School District
CEEB Code 391550
Principal Timothy Royall
Vice principal Heather L. Bearney Attendance & Behavior Gr. 9-12,
Vice principal Shannon Howard Academics & Instruction Gr.9-10,
Vice principal JoAnne Townsend Academics & Instruction Gr.11-12
Teaching staff 95[1]
Grades 9-12[1]
Enrollment 1,499 (as of 2010-2011)
 • Grade 9 406
 • Grade 10 509
 • Grade 11 439
 • Grade 12 456
Average class size 24
Student to teacher ratio 16.1[1]
Campus type Suburban
School color(s) Blue and white
Athletics PIAA class AAA/AAAA [2]
Mascot Titan
Team name Shaler Area Titans
Rival North Allegheny
Accreditation Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools
Average SAT scores CR-493; M–500; W-488
Average ACT scores 23.9
Newspaper The Oracle

Shaler Area High School serves ninth through twelfth graders in the Shaler Area School District of Pittsburgh, PA. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, in 2010, the school had an enrollment of 1,810 pupils, with 359 pupils eligible for a federal free or reduced price lunch. The school employed 124 teachers yielding a student teacher ratio of 14:1. The students' Race/Ethnicity breakdown was: 1,750 Caucasian, 6 Hispanic, 27 Black, 7 Asian Pacific Islander.[3]


Shaler Area High School was established in 1971 from the court-ordered merger of Etna borough, Reserve Township, Millvale borough, and Shaler Township high schools. The current building was constructed during 1978 and 1979.[4][5]

In 2006, the school board approved a plan to regroup grades within its schools, including moving ninth grade students to the high school. $30 million in renovations were budgeted to create space for classrooms and to enlarge other school facilities.[6] although it was perfectly capable of handling 9th grade up to the 1997-1998 school year.

Graduation Rate[edit]

In 2011, Shaler Area High School's graduation rate was 93%.[7] In 2010, the Pennsylvania Department of Education issued a new, 4 year cohort graduation rate. The Shaler's rate was 92% for 2010.[8]

According to traditional graduation rate calculations


In 2011, Shaler Area High School declined to Corrective Action II 4th Year AYP status due to chronic, low student achievement in reading and mathematics. In 2010, the school was in Corrective Action II 3rd Year AYP status.[13] Under the federal No Child Left Behind law, the school administration was required to notify parents of the poor achievement and to offer the opportunity to transfer to a successful school within the school district. Additionally, the Pennsylvania Department of Education required the administration to develop a School Improvement Plan to address the chronic low student achievement. In 2011, the school reported that 14 core courses were taught by teachers who were designated "Non‐Highly Qualified Teachers" under NCLB. Sixteen teachers had emergency certification.[14]

In 2011, the 11th grade was ranked 50th out of 122 western Pennsylvania high schools based on three years of student academic achievement in PSSAs in: reading, math writing and science.[15] (Includes schools in: Allegheny County, Beaver County, Butler County, Fayette County, Westmoreland County, and Washington County. In 2010, Shaler Area School District ranked 53rd out of 122 high schools in western Pennsylvania.

PSSA Results

11th Grade Reading:

  • 2011 - 71% on grade level, (13% below basic). State - 69.1% of 11th graders are on grade level.[16]
  • 2010 - 75%, (12% below basic). State - 66% [17]
  • 2009 - 75% (17% below basic). State - 65% [18]
  • 2008 - 73% (9% below basic). State - 65% [19]
  • 2007 - 71% (12% below basic). State - 65% [20]

11th Grade Math:

  • 2011 - 59% on grade level (23% below basic). In Pennsylvania, 60.3% of 11th graders are on grade level.[21]
  • 2010 - 62% (21% below basic). State - 59%
  • 2009 - 59% (22% below basic). State - 56%.
  • 2008 - 64% (16% below basic). State - 56%
  • 2007 - 59% (17% below basic). State - 53%

11th Grade Science:

  • 2011 - 48% on grade level (10% below basic). State - 40% of 11th graders were on grade level.[22]
  • 2010 - 50% (12% below basic). State - 39%
  • 2009 - 46% (12% below basic). State - 40% [23]
  • 2008 - 45% (11% below basic). State - 39%

College Remediation Rate[edit]

According to a Pennsylvania Department of Education study released in January 2009, 37% of the Shaler Area High School graduates required remediation in mathematics and or reading before they were prepared to take college level courses in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education or community colleges.[24] Less than 66% of Pennsylvania high school graduates, who enroll in a four-year college in Pennsylvania, will earn a bachelor's degree within six years. Among Pennsylvania high school graduates pursuing an associate degree, only one in three graduate in three years.[25] Per the Pennsylvania Department of Education, one in three recent high school graduates who attend Pennsylvania's public universities and community colleges takes at least one remedial course in math, reading or English.

SAT Scores[edit]

From January to June 2011, 296 Shaler Area School District students took the SAT exams. The student's Verbal Average Score was 504. The Math average score was 514. The Writing average score was 498.[26] Pennsylvania ranked 40th among states with SAT scores: Verbal - 493, Math - 501, Writing - 479.[27] In the United States 1.65 million students took the exam in 2011. They averaged 497 (out of 800) verbal, 514 math and 489 in writing.[28]

Dual enrollment[edit]

The high school offers a Dual Enrollment program. This state program permits high school students to take courses, at local higher education institutions, to earn college credits. Students remain enrolled at their high school. The courses count towards high school graduation requirements and towards earning a college degree. The students continue to have full access to activities and programs at their high school. The college credits are offered at a deeply discounted rate. The state offered a small grant to assist students in costs for tuition, fees and books [29] Under the Pennsylvania Transfer and Articulation Agreement, many Pennsylvania colleges and universities accept these credits for students who transfer to their institutions.[30] For the 2009-10 funding year, the school district received a state grant of $3,041 for the program.[31]

Graduation requirements[edit]

The Shaler Area School Board has determined that a pupil must earn 24 credits to graduate including: math 3 credits, English 4 credits, Social Studies 3 credits, Science 3 credits, Physical Education 2 credits, Health 1 credit and electives 8 credits. The Shaler Area School District Board of Education amended high school graduation requirements to include a PSSA score in the Advanced or Proficient category on both Reading and Math PSSA tests in the 8th and 11th grades.[32]

By law, all Pennsylvania secondary school students must complete a project as a part of their eligibility to graduate from high school. The type of project, its rigor and its expectations are set by the individual school district.[33]

By Pennsylvania School Board regulations, for the graduating class of 2016, students must demonstrate successful completion of secondary level course work in Algebra I, Biology, English Composition, and Literature for which the Keystone Exams serve as the final course exams. Students’ Keystone Exam scores shall count for at least one-third of the final course grade.[34][35][36] In 2011, Pennsylvania high school students field tested the Algebra 1, Biology and English Lit exams. The statewide results were: Algebra 1 38% on grade level, Biology 35% on grade level and English Lit - 49% on grade level.[37] Individual student, school or district reports were not made public, although they were reported to district officials by the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

AP Courses[edit]

Honors Courses[edit]

Notable alumni[edit]

Classrooms for the Future grant[edit]

The Classroom for the Future state program provided districts with hundreds of thousands of extra state funding to buy laptop computers for each core curriculum high school class (English, Science, History, Math) and paid for teacher training to optimize the computers use. The program was funded from 2006-2009. Shaler Area high School received $223,133 in 2006-07. In 2007-08, the district received $300,000. The district received $75,909 in 2008-09 for a total funding of $599,042.[41] In Allegheny County, the highest award was given to Highlands School District which received $835,286. The highest funding statewide was awarded to Philadelphia City School District in Philadelphia County - $9,409,073. In 2010, Classrooms for the Future funding was curtailed statewide due to a massive state financial crisis.


The district offers a variety of clubs, activities and sports. Eligibility for participation is determined by school board policy. All students participating in sports and competitive extra-curricular activities (e.g., Choir, Marching Band, Gate Competitions) must maintain a 2.0 or above cumulative grade point average (GPA), or a 2.0 or above GPA for the previous nine-week grading period, or a 2.0 or above GPA for a 4.5 week interim grading period.[42]

By Pennsylvania law, all K-12 students residing in the district, including those who attend a private nonpublic school, cyber charter school, charter school and those homeschooled, are eligible to participate in the extracurricular programs including all athletics. They must meet the same eligibility rules as the students enrolled in the district's schools.[43]


  1. ^ a b c "Shaler Area HS". National Center for Education Statistics. 2006. 
  2. ^ "PIAA - Schools - Directory - Shaler Area High School". 
  3. ^ National Center for Education Statistics - Common Care Data - Shaler Area High School, 2010
  4. ^ "Bids $500,0000 below estimates". North Hills News Record. 1978-02-24. 
  5. ^ "New Shaler Area High boasts modern facilities, bright surroundings". North Hills News Record. 1979-09-04. 
  6. ^ Adam, Jan (2006-05-04). "Shaler Area plans all-day kindergarten, building updates". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. 
  7. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 29, 2011). "Shaler Area School District AYP Data Table". 
  8. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (March 15, 2011). "New 4-year Cohort Graduation Rate Calculation Now Being Implemented". 
  9. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (October 20, 2010). "Shaler Area High School AYP Report Card Data table". 
  10. ^ The Times-Tribune (June 27, 2010). "PA School District Statistical Snapshot Database 2008-09". 
  11. ^ The Times-Tribune (June 25, 2009). "Allegheny County School Districts Graduation Rates 2008". 
  12. ^ Pennsylvania Partnerships for Children (2008). "High School Graduation rate 2007" (PDF). 
  13. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 29, 2011). "Shaler Area High School AYP Overview". 
  14. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, Professional Qualifications of Teachers Report - Shaler Area High School, September 29, 2011
  15. ^ Pittsburgh Business Times (April 4, 2011). "The Rankings: Eleventh grade". 
  16. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 29, 2011). "2010-2011 PSSA and AYP Results". 
  17. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2010). "2009-2010 PSSA and AYP Results". 
  18. ^ The Times-Tribune. (September 14, 2009). "Grading Our Schools database, 2009 PSSA results,". 
  19. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (August 15, 2008). "2007-2008 PSSA and AYP Results". 
  20. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2007). "PSSA Math and Reading results". 
  21. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 29, 2011). "Shaler Area High School Academic Achievement Report Card 2011" (PDF). 
  22. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 29, 2011). "2010-2011 PSSA results in Science". 
  23. ^ The Times-Tribune (2009). "Grading Our Schools database, 2009 Science PSSA results". 
  24. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (January 20, 2009). "Pennsylvania College Remediation Report,". 
  25. ^ National Center for Education Statistics, IPEDS Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System, 2008
  26. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2011). "Public School SAT Scores 2011". 
  27. ^ College Board (September 2011). "SAT Scores State By State - Pennsylvania". 
  28. ^ "While U.S. SAT scores dip across the board, N.J. test-takers hold steady". September 2011. 
  29. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2010). "Dual Enrollment Guidelines". 
  30. ^ Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (March 2010). "Pennsylvania Transfer and Articulation Agreement". 
  31. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2009). "Dual Enrollment Grants 2009 10 Fall Grants by School District". 
  32. ^ Shaler Area School District Administration (January 8, 2009). "Shaler Area School District Strategic Plan" (PDF). 
  33. ^ Pennsylvania State Board of Education. "Pennsylvania Code §4.24 (a) High school graduation requirements". 
  34. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2010). "Keystone Exam Overview" (PDF). 
  35. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 2011). "Pennsylvania Keystone Exams Overview". 
  36. ^ Pennsylvania State Board of Education (2010). "Rules and Regulation Title 22 PA School Code CH. 4". 
  37. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2011). "Keystone Exams". 
  38. ^ Shontz, Lori (2003-03-02). "Book shows Afghan women's covert struggle". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. 
  39. ^ "Her pages bring romance to life". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. 1999-08-11. p. N-2. 
  40. ^ Slusser, Susan; Shea, John; Schulman, Henry (2001-10-14). "When money doesn't matter [A'S NOTEBOOK]". San Francisco Chronicle. 
  41. ^ Pennsylvania Auditor General (December 22, 2008). "Classrooms for the Future grants audit" (PDF). 
  42. ^ Shaler Area School Board, Shaler Area High School Stduent Handbook, 2010
  43. ^ Pennsylvania Office of the Governor Press Release, (November 10, 2005). "Home-Schooled, Charter School Children Can Participate in School District Extracurricular Activities". 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 40°30′55″N 79°58′29″W / 40.5153°N 79.9746°W / 40.5153; -79.9746