William Howard Taft Charter High School: Full Guide

Location: Woodland Hills, CA

Are you a student or parent at William Howard Taft Charter High School? Want to understand how to get the most out of high school?

We've written the best guide to William Howard Taft Charter High available. Here we'll cover:

  • Breakdowns of student ethnicity, gender, and family income
  • How safe William Howard Taft Charter High is to attend
  • SAT/ACT/AP scores earned by William Howard Taft Charter High students
  • Which AP/IB classes you can take at William Howard Taft Charter High
  • Every sports team you can join at William Howard Taft Charter High

Let's get started!

Basic Information

William Howard Taft Charter High School is a public school, supporting grades 9 to 12 . It's located in Woodland Hills, CA in Los Angeles County.

Based on its location, William Howard Taft Charter High is classified as a school in a large city. Here's the location on a map:


Contact Information

Mailing address:

William Howard Taft Charter High School
5461 Winnetka Ave.
Woodland Hills, CA 91364-2548

Phone number: 8182273600

William Howard Taft Charter High School homepage: http://www.tafthigh.org/

Principal: Daniel Steiner
Email the principal: [email protected]


Student Demographics

Student Enrollment

The total enrollment at William Howard Taft Charter High School is 2385 students, making it a very large high school, in the top 10% of all California high schools by size.

Wow! Attending William Howard Taft Charter High might feel like attending a college. You'll be surrounded by a large group of students (over 500 per class) and have more options for activities and clubs to join, which can be exciting.

On the other hand, you may also find that resources like counseling are spread thin across so many students. Make sure that you can get enough teacher and counselor attention to succeed at William Howard Taft Charter High, which may require being proactive.


Growth in Student Body Size

Is William Howard Taft Charter High School growing or shrinking? This will help you see trends in where the school is headed.

From our calculations, the enrollment at William Howard Taft Charter High has steadily increased over the past few years. We calculate this by comparing enrollment in grades 9 to 12.

Male Students Female Students All Students
9th grade 305 312 617
10th grade 336 279 615
11th grade 314 289 603
12th grade 262 288 550

As you can see in the table above, the freshman class is 67 students larger than the senior class. This suggests that the school is growing in size and taking on more students.

There are a few reasons this could be happening. The city of Woodland Hills could be growing in population, thus sending more students into William Howard Taft Charter High. Alternatively, William Howard Taft Charter High could be relaxing its student policies and taking in more students.


Gender Split

Are there more boys or girls at William Howard Taft Charter High School?

From our statistics, William Howard Taft Charter High has a 52:48 split between male and female students in the high school grades.

William Howard Taft Charter High has a balanced male-female ratio that's largely representative of the general population in Los Angeles County. Since the student body is roughly half and half, it should feel like there are equal numbers of boys and girls in your classes.

This usually means that William Howard Taft Charter High doesn't strongly select for either males or females, unlike other schools that have a large majority of males or females.


Ethnicity Breakdown

What's the racial diversity at William Howard Taft Charter High School? Does one ethnicity make up most of the student body, or is it fairly balanced?

From our statistics, William Howard Taft Charter High has a diverse student body. No single ethnicity composes more than 50% of all students, which means you'll be surrounded by a diverse set of students in class. Only a third of California schools show this much diversity.

The most common ethnicity at William Howard Taft Charter High is white. In California, white students make up 26.3% of all California students, and are the second most common ethnicity after Hispanic students.

Percentage Number
American Indian/Alaska Native 0.6% 16
Asian 10.8% 258
Hispanic 33.8% 807
Black 12.6% 301
White 41.7% 996
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 0.2% 7
Two or more races 0.0% 0

High schools usually reflect the population in the surrounding area, so the ethnicities of students likely resembles those of Woodland Hills. If you'd like to see how other nearby schools look in diversity, just google "[name of school] prepscholar" to find our guide to that specific school.


Income Level of William Howard Taft Charter High Families

What are the family incomes of students at William Howard Taft Charter High School? To determine this, we look at the number of students who qualify for free or reduced lunches, a classification by the US federal government.

To qualify for a reduced price meal, family income needs to be below 185% of the federal poverty guidelines. For a family of 4, this means an income of around $45,000 or below.

To qualify for a free meal, family income needs to be below 130% of the federal poverty guidelines. For a family of 4, this means an income of around $32,000 or below.

The lower the percentage of students who qualify for free or reduced price meals, the higher the income levels are likely to be.

At William Howard Taft Charter High, 12.5% of students qualify for reduced-price lunches, and 48.9% qualify for free lunches.

This means William Howard Taft Charter High has a below average level of poverty. With most students not qualifying for free or reduced price lunches, William Howard Taft Charter High is below average among California schools in poverty level. The income level of families in Woodland Hills is thus likely to be relatively high.

Number Percent
Reduced-price lunches 300 12.5%
Free lunches 1168 48.9%
Do not qualify for reduced-price or free lunches 917 38.4%

As with ethnicity, this likely reflects the surrounding community in Woodland Hills and doesn't speak much about the school itself.

William Howard Taft Charter High is in the middle 50% of schools by income level. Generally, higher income level schools are better-funded and have a higher quality range of classes and activities. William Howard Taft Charter High is likely in the middle of the pack in this regard and will give you a good set of options to try.

If you have any interests that William Howard Taft Charter High doesn't cover, look to your local community for activities, or to the Internet for self-study AP classes.

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School Safety

How safe is William Howard Taft Charter High School to attend? Can you expect a lot of conflict as a student here?

To study this, we look at disciplinary data for two types of incidents at William Howard Taft Charter High: referrals to law enforcement (when incidents are reported to police), and arrests.

These are the most serious disciplinary actions available to school administration and are more severe than suspensions or expulsions. Suspensions are often discretionary and can be given just for being disruptive in class. In contrast, law enforcement referrals and arrests often indicate incidents that put the safety of other William Howard Taft Charter High students at risk.

In the school year of 2011-2012, there were 61 referrals to law enforcement (47 male, 14 female), and 4 school-related arrests (4 males, 0 females). This is out of a total enrollment of 2596 students.

To put this into perspective, most California schools (59% of them) reported 0 law enforcement referrals and arrests.

This means that 2.5 William Howard Taft Charter High has minor safety issues. For every 100 students, there were just 2.5 law-enforcement related actions, but this is still higher than 75% of California schools.

With this record, is William Howard Taft Charter High School significantly different from other schools in the area? It could be that William Howard Taft Charter High has an especially bad record, or it could be that the local area shows a pattern.

Compare this school with other high schools in the same school district, using the following table:

Los Angeles Unified School District Safety

School Name Total Referred Total Arrests Enrollment
Frank Lanterman 0 0 222
Youth Opportunities Unlimited 6 0 323
Jane Addams Continuation 0 0 216
William Tell Aggeler Opportunity High 0 0 65
John R. Wooden High 0 0 144
Angel's Gate (continuation) 0 0 84

Academic Performance


Now we get to a major aspect of assessing a high school: academic performance. How good of an education will you get at William Howard Taft Charter High School? Will you be competitive for college? Will you have access to advanced classes?

We've compiled everything we could find about William Howard Taft Charter High's academics here.


Graduation Rate

To start off, an important benchmark of academic achievement is graduation rate. For all students who start high school at William Howard Taft Charter High, the state of California wants as many students to graduate as possible, since a high school diploma can mean a big difference in getting a job.

At William Howard Taft Charter High, 85% (of 631) William Howard Taft Charter High students graduated within four years of starting high school.

Here's how this stacks up to other schools. The California state government has defined 90% as a target rate. The state average is around 80-85%.

William Howard Taft Charter High is in the 56th percentile of all public high schools in California for graduation rate. This is above average. Generally, a graduation rate of above 90% is considered good and well above average, and below 75% is well below average.

Note: This data comes from a few years back, but the trends are likely to stay the same, since schools don't get significantly better or worse within a short period of time.

Standardized Testing


Next, we'll look at another major piece of high school academics: standardized testing performance for William Howard Taft Charter High School students. These are tests that are administered to large populations of students for comparison purposes.

Let’s start by taking a look at the data for nationally administered standardized tests.

SAT Scores

As you probably know, the SAT is a critical test used for college admissions. The higher the score you get, the better your academic performance compared to students nationwide, and the easier it is to get into top colleges.

We did in-depth research and found the average William Howard Taft Charter High School SAT scores.

The average composite SAT score is a 1550 out of 2400, compared to a national average of 1500. Each year, roughly 395 at William Howard Taft Charter High take the SAT.

This is an above-average SAT score, putting William Howard Taft Charter High School in the top 25% of all California high schools and well above the national average (55% of students score above the national average). This is a notable academic achievement that distinguishes William Howard Taft Charter High as a high-achieving school.

This is a good indication that you'll receive an above-average education at William Howard Taft Charter High. While your school isn't in the very top echelon of all California public schools, you're still in a great environment.

Here's a breakdown of SAT scores by section:

Average SAT Scores (2013-2014)

Source Critical Reading Math Writing Composite
William Howard Taft Charter High 509 527 519 1550
California 498 510 496 1504
United States 495 511 484 1490

Note that the SAT has since changed to a 1600 scale, but the trends above for your high school are likely to continue. Just use this guide to convert between the old 2400 scale and the new 1600 scale.

To learn more about SAT percentile rankings, read our guide on what SAT percentiles really mean.

How good is 1550 as an SAT score? Find out with our complete 1550 SAT score guide, including which colleges you can get into with a 1550 or any other SAT score!

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ACT Scores

In California, the ACT is less popular than the SAT. Fewer students take the ACT, and typically these students are more motivated and academically prepared for college. Therefore, it's harder to compare William Howard Taft Charter High School ACT scores with the rest of the country.

At William Howard Taft Charter High, the average ACT composite score was 23, compared to the nationwide average of 20. Each year, roughly 102 out of 2385 total students take the ACT.

This is above average performance, putting William Howard Taft Charter High in the top 50% of California high schools. Since the ACT tests what you learn in school, these ACT scores are a good indication that you'll get an above-average education at William Howard Taft Charter High.

Here are the average English, Math, Reading, and Science scores for William Howard Taft Charter High compared to California and the US:

Average ACT Scores

Source English Math Reading Science
William Howard Taft Charter High 24 24 24 23
California 21.8 22.8 22.3 21.7
United States 20.3 20.9 21.3 20.8

Scores provided are for the 2013-14 school year.

Find out more about percentile rankings and the ACT in this article.

Every individual is different. What counts as a good ACT score for you? Learn more with this article!

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Advanced Placement (AP)

Advanced Placement (AP) classes are college-level courses that are an additional academic challenge may give William Howard Taft Charter High School students credit for college.

Here's what we're looking for: high average AP test scores as well as high AP passing rates.

AP Scores

Every year, roughly 517 students in grades 9-12 at William Howard Taft Charter High take 1078 AP exams. It's important to understand how students score on the AP - earning a 3, 4, or 5 on the AP test means passing the test and often earning college credit.

The average score of all AP exams taken at William Howard Taft Charter High is 2.9 out of 5.

This score puts William Howard Taft Charter High at average performance. For AP tests, the passing score is considered a 3, and the number of students who pass and don't pass are roughly even. This performance places William Howard Taft Charter High School in the top 50% of schools for AP tests.

It's great that William Howard Taft Charter High offers an AP program so you have the opportunity to take courses at a college level. Even though roughly half of all AP students here don't get a passing grade, half do - so with motivated studying throughout the year, you'll be able to beat the average.

We have specific data on how many students got a 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 (out of 5) on AP exams in the chart below:


AP Test-Taking Statistics

Another way to gauge the quality of a school's AP program is to see how many AP students actually took AP exams at William Howard Taft Charter High School. If a lot of students enroll in AP courses but don't actually take the AP tests, it can be a sign that students don't feel adequately prepared to take the test, or the school isn't encouraging students to take the exams enough.

At William Howard Taft Charter High, there is a total enrollment of 450 in AP courses (a student taking more than one AP course counts more than once).

Of AP-taking students, 329 took AP tests for ALL AP courses. 82 students took AP tests for SOME AP Courses, and 37 took AP courses but took NO tests.


This is good test participation. Most AP students at William Howard Taft Charter High School take the AP test for every one of their AP courses, outnumbering the students who take some or no AP exams. This is a good sign that students feel confident enough to take tests for all AP courses available to them, which reflects well on the teachers and course material. William Howard Taft Charter High can continue to improve by reducing the number of students who take AP exams for some or none of their courses, but it's in a good state.

Note: The most recent data we have available is from 2012, so the statistics may have changed since then. Most likely, however, the trends are likely to continue - above average schools are likely to stay above average, and below average schools are likely to stay below average.


AP Passing Rates

For AP students at William Howard Taft Charter High School who take the exam, it's important to know how they do. Here we have specific data on how many students got a passing grade (a 3 or above) on all, some, or none of the AP exams that they took.

Of all AP test takers, 217 students passed every AP test they took, which is a fantastic job. 91 students passed some but not all AP exams, and 106 students didn't pass ANY AP exam they took.

 

This is very strong performance. The majority of William Howard Taft Charter High School students pass ALL the AP tests they take - an impressive feat, especially if students take multiple AP exams each year!

Overall, this points to a strong AP program at William Howard Taft Charter High: across all AP course offerings, teachers are able to prepare students well for the exam. There are still some students who fail some or all of their exams, but this is a good starting point to improve from. You'll have a strong foundation to learn from throughout high school.

To find out the passing rates for specific AP courses at William Howard Taft Charter High School, you'll have to talk to your guidance counselor (who can then help you find that information). For instance, one AP Calculus teacher may have an above-90% passing rate, while another might only have a 50% passing rate. If you can, you'll want to take the class with the teacher who has more students get a 3 or above on the AP exam.

Find out more about the average score for each AP subject here.


State Tests

As of 2014, eleventh graders attending William Howard Taft Charter High School must take standardized tests in English/Language Arts and Math as part of the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP). These align with the new Common Core standards and are called the "Smarter Balanced" tests.

If William Howard Taft Charter High students meet or exceed state standards, they're academically prepared to graduate high school and go to college. Specifically, we care about the percentage of students who meet or exceed state standards. The larger this number, the higher the preparation of students at William Howard Taft Charter High.

English/Language Arts

At William Howard Taft Charter High School, 43% of students meet or exceed state standards in English/Language Arts.

This is considered below average and puts William Howard Taft Charter High in the bottom 50% of all high schools in California for English/Language Arts. The majority of William Howard Taft Charter High students do not pass state standards, and only a small percentage pass.

This specific percentage isn't much cause for concern - because the Common Core is new, the pass rate at William Howard Taft Charter High will likely rise over time. But it still reflects William Howard Taft Charter High's below average standing among California high schools.

English/Language Arts Test Results (2015)

 

Read more about what’s measured in each ELA area score here.


Math

The other major test taken for state assessments is Math. Across the state, Math performance is generally lower than English/Language Arts performance, so it's natural for this number to be lower.

At William Howard Taft Charter High School, 26% of students meet or exceed state standards in Math. This is considered well below average and puts William Howard Taft Charter High in the bottom 25% of all high schools in California. The vast majority of William Howard Taft Charter High students don't meet state standards, and only a small percentage pass.

Math Test Results (2015)

 

Read more about what’s measured in each Math area score, go here.


Academic Offerings


In addition to the standard high school curriculum, many high schools like William Howard Taft Charter High School offer advanced coursework as part of the Advanced Placement (AP) or International Baccalaureate (IB) programs.

Brief Intro to AP/IB

AP and IB courses are designed at the difficulty level of college introductory classes. There are several important benefits to taking advanced coursework at William Howard Taft Charter High. First, taking more advanced classes shows colleges that you're committed to challenging yourself academically, and that you're one of the more advanced students at William Howard Taft Charter High. Taking AP/IB classes also raises your weighted GPA and makes you a stronger college applicant.

Furthermore, many colleges will accept your William Howard Taft Charter High AP/IB coursework as college coursework. In some cases, you'll be able to skip introductory-level classes and move to more advanced classes. In other cases, you'll be able to avoid having to take required courses and might even be able to graduate earlier than the standard 4 years. Often this will require you to pass the AP test, getting a score of 3 or above.

So what advanced courses does William Howard Taft Charter High School offer?

AP Courses

William Howard Taft Charter High School offers AP courses in 17 subjects.

This is an impressive number of AP subjects, putting William Howard Taft Charter High School in the top 25% of California schools in AP offerings. You'll likely have all of the most popular AP courses available to you, as well as some broader interests.

The total number of AP subjects is 38, so William Howard Taft Charter High is missing a good number of subjects, but these are likely the least popular subjects, like less popular foreign languages. If there are any AP courses you want to take that aren't being offered at William Howard Taft Charter High, ask your counselor for other options.

Of course, keep in mind that quality matters even more than quantity - it's important that your AP courses are taught well by engaging teachers. But the strong AP program at William Howard Taft Charter High likely means you'll be in good hands.

The following AP courses were offered at William Howard Taft Charter High during 2015-2016:

Course Title
Biology
Calculus AB
Calculus BC
Chemistry
English Language and Composition
English Literature and Composition
Environmental Science
French Language and Culture
Human Geography
Physics C: Electricity and Magnetism
Physics C: Mechanics
Psychology
Spanish Language and Culture
Statistics
United States Government and Politics
United States History
World History

Sports Teams

Finally, we'll cover which sports teams are available at William Howard Taft Charter High School. Sports are an integral part of many students' high school experiences. The more sports that are available, and the more levels supported (Frosh, JV, Varsity), the more likely you'll be able to participate in a sport at William Howard Taft Charter High.

By the way, the William Howard Taft Charter High mascot is the Toreadors. Go Toreadors!

William Howard Taft Charter High School fields 16 teams for girls' sports. This is a sizable number that puts William Howard Taft Charter High in the top 50% of California schools that offer girls' sports. You won't get the full range of sports and levels, but you'll be able to try out for a few options. If you participate in a sport that William Howard Taft Charter High doesn't offer, consider looking for a local non-school team that you can join.

And now for the boys: William Howard Taft Charter High School fields 21 teams for boys' sports. This puts William Howard Taft Charter High in the top 25% of California schools that offer boys' sports. Boys will have a large pick of sports to try out for.

Boys Teams Girls Teams
Basketball
Var JV Fr
Basketball
Var JV Fr
Golf
Var JV Fr
Tennis
Var JV Fr
Tennis
Var JV Fr
Football
Var JV Fr
Volleyball
Var JV Fr
Volleyball
Var JV Fr
Baseball
Var JV Fr
Softball
Var JV Fr
Waterpolo
Var JV Fr
Waterpolo
Var JV Fr
Trackfield
Var JV Fr
Trackfield
Var JV Fr
Crosscountry
Var JV Fr
Crosscountry
Var JV Fr
Soccer
Var JV Fr
Soccer
Var JV Fr
Swimming
Var JV Fr
Swimming
Var JV Fr

What’s Next?


Want to get more useful information about high school classes and preparing for colleges? Our blog has a ton of articles and advice on topics ranging from coursework and GPA to letters of recommendation, extracurriculars, and much more!

Ready to bulk up your schedule and maximize your college preparedness? Read all about the Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate programs.

Not quite in high school yet, but eager to get started? We've also got information for younger students interested in advanced learning opportunities, both in and out of school.

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Sources

The data on this page is drawn from a variety of sources, including (but not limited to):