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About This School

Terra Nova High School is a public high school in Pacifica. The principal of Terra Nova High School is Thomas Minshew, whose e-mail is tminsh@juhsd.net. 1,367 students go to Terra Nova High School and identify mostly as Filipino; White, non-Hispanic; and Black, non-Hispanic. 0.5% of the Terra Nova High School students have "limited English proficiency." 24% of the 1,367 students here are paying reduced lunch prices. The student to teacher ratio at Terra Nova High School is 23:1. Alma Heights Christian Academy is one of the nearest high schools.

Extracurricular Activities

  • Arts

    • Band
    • Ceramics sculpture
    • Chorus
    • Computer arts
    • Dance
    • Drawing painting
    • Theater drama
    • Video film production
  • Languages Taught

    • French
    • Spanish
  • Sports

    • Badminton
    • Baseball
    • Basketball
    • Cheerleading
    • Cross country
    • Football
    • Golf
    • P.E. classes
    • Soccer
    • Softball
    • Swimming
    • Tennis
    • Track
    • Ultimate Frisbee
    • Volleyball
    • Water polo
    • Wrestling

Student Ethnicities

Ethnicity School District
Filipino 9% 31%
White, non-Hispanic 49% 22%
Black, non-Hispanic 3% 5%
Hispanic 23% 26%
Pacific Islander 2% 1%
Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 2% 4950%
Asian 13% 13%
Multiracial 10% %
Native American or Native Alaskan 0.3% 0.7%
Unspecified 0.2% 0.3%

Student Subgroups

Subgroup School District
Students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch program 24% 31%
Limited English proficiency 0.5% 8%

Community Rating & Reviews

  • (1 year ago)

    I had planned on transferring my son in for his Freshman year instead of Oceana. Unfortunately one of your teacher's has left a very bitter taste in my mouth during her extreme lapse in mental judgment on the 4th of July when this teacher (graduated in 2007 from SFSU specializes in mathematics. We won't say any names...) decided to start screaming out of her window at my children enjoying the fireworks the rest of the neighbors were lighting off. Saying "you need to teach your kids to stop being so selfish and shutup". And then after we were all inside around 1030pm and the neighbors were still lighting fireworks her husband starts screaming at the top of his lungs all sorts of obscenities towards us in front of my children and she calls the cops on us accusing us of using illegal fireworks when we were inside at the time! She didn't like me correcting the address for her and came storming outside and her husband was right behind her with GOLF CLUBS. YES IN FRONT OF MY CHILDREN! Her husband then tells me to learn how to use birth control and I told him he should actually leave the house and take a look around before accusations are made. A mental health evaluation is needed.

  • (1 year ago)

    Our 3 children have gone to Terra Nova and I have to say that you can get a very good education here. The AP teachers are fabulous. My son's Spanish teacher was dedicated and excellent. Another Spanish teacher was bad but he is retiring thank goodness. TN has an impressive array of sports and there's a sport for everyone from competitive badminton to water polo to football (which helps pay for the rest of them)! TN also has a competitive Mock Trial team a consistently award-winning Band and a Robotics Team which just won First Place in Design Internationally. Yes #1 in the world. So students can choose to party if they want to--there's going to be that choice at any school--or they can get involved with the challenging opportunities that Terra Nova provides. It's really up to them.

  • (2 years ago)

    The system for monitoring my student;s grades is great. Thank you for getting it up and running. Also all six teachers have been great at communication with me.

  • (3 years ago)

    Still can't access my son's grades. This makes supervising one's child extremely difficult and frustrating. They also allowed my son to play sports when he had below a 2.0 gpa. Of course they said this could never happen but it did. Also communication with the teachers is difficult because of the junk mail filters they have. So if you want to know anything about your child's education/progress you're going to have to get the information from your child themself.

  • (3 years ago)

    This school is horrible. I went to Terra Nova my freshman year and then I transferred out at the end. Terra Nova is the number one party school in the Bay Area I feel. Terra Nova's students practically have parties every night kids show up to class high drunk etc. Aside from that the school's curriculum is desgined for kids that do not wish to excel in life. Terra Nova offers basic education and nothing more. There are smart students at Terra Nova sure but the school itself focuses more on sports than they do academics. So if you care more about your child's ability to throw a football than their education then this is just the school for you. I transferred out because I simply was partying too hard and not getting enough work done. I attend Ocean now and there is a vast improvement. I am now a senior with a 3.7 GPA I am motivated about school and life after high school. Even though Oceana pushes me to my limits academically I am glad they do. Terra Nova is a horrible school that as an ex-student I really know what it's all about.

  • (4 years ago)

    They manage to help their students at every angle to succeed!

  • (4 years ago)

    I love the small town feel at a fairly large school the semse of community and the strong support of the athletic programs

  • (4 years ago)

    My son is really enjoying high school at Terra Nova. He is active socially and is doing well in his classes. He has also taken advantage of the sports programs available and there are lots of them to choose from. It's a great scholl.

  • (4 years ago)

    Responsive to student needs still offers after-school programs despite budget issues without compromising other programs very good sports teams distiguished GreatSchools high rating and more....

  • (4 years ago)

    TN is a great school with lots of wonderful caring dedicated staff/faculty and even more enthusiastic involved students!

  • (4 years ago)

    Great administration great location my 3 kids nephew and friends love it.....super colors and mascot - traditional school.

  • (4 years ago)

    They have something to keep every child challenged!

  • (4 years ago)

    Many dedicated professionals who put students first.

  • (4 years ago)

    At Terra Nova the students teachers parents and Pacifica community all care about TN and do their best and more!

  • (4 years ago)

    A truly dedicated staff who work their magic on a shoe string budget! I enjoyed my 4 years there and all my kids have too! GO TIGERS!

  • (4 years ago)

    Two of my kids made National Merit Semifinalists out of Terra Nova.

  • (5 years ago)

    Terra Nora is mediocre academically but has few safety problems because it's in a small lmiddle-class town. It underperforms academically despite having few low-income or bilingual students relative to elsewhere. Math was the best-taught subject since it's 'objective.' So-called AP English classes are terrible. Students read very little literature and almost no classics. Almost all 'literature' is popular works of the last fifty years (best-sellers). For 4 years AP classes assigned nothing before 1900 except Shakespeare 2 Dickens novels and 'The Scarlet Letter.' No classic poetry was read. Nothing is presented in chronological order. The teachers could easily offer chronologically-organized American and English literature reading Chaucer Milton Romantic poets Austen etc. or in American literature Twain Dickinson Whitman Faulkner etc. since it costs no more to read classics than bestsellers but teachers are afraid to challenge students. Also assigned papers were absurdly short (typically 3-5 pages!)

  • (5 years ago)

    I am currently a Senior at TN and I have nothing but great things to say about this school. The teachers here have helped me without hesistation whenever I was confused and they really do care about their students. The sports at TN are great (especially the football program) and it only makes the school spirit vibe even better. Coming from a very small middle school of about 200 kids TN seemed huge to me as an incoming freshman but I got used to it after about the first week. I have made so many friends here and I feel like this school has prepared me for UC Berkeley (which I will be attending in the fall of 2010) and the real world.

  • (6 years ago)

    I graduated from TN a few years back. The school curriculum wasn't too challenging (my average GPA after 4 years was a 3.8) and there were only a handful of good teachers. I think most of teachers there don't really care if the student learns or not as long as they get their paycheck. Only a handful of them would care if the student learned anything Mrs. Tom and Mr. Ellison to name a couple. I don t think TN prepares students well enough to succeed at the top tier schools like UC Berkeley or UCLA but do a decent job at preparing students for lower tier schools like UC Davis or UC Irvine and the CSU s. The school is also very sports oriented which is nice but really lacks diversity which is a shame.

  • (6 years ago)

    The school is alright i went there for three years caused my troulble but i woulds ay that some of the teachers have a lack of respect for students and some councelors are rediculous.

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