Principal's Letter

Principal's Letter



My name is Elizabeth Messmann and I am proud and honored to serve as the principal of Newcomers High School. It is my pleasure to welcome you home and back to our community as we begin the 2023- 2024 academic year. 

The past two years have been a time of great change and growth within our community and we look forward to a year of greater stability with many of our students returning for their second or third year in a new country and in their new school. 

Our school motto: “Seen, Honored, and Empowered” speaks to the fact that we seek to SEE each of our students as the individuals that they are. We value learning about and understanding each unique story and the life experiences that our students and their caregivers bring with them when they join our school community. We strive to HONOR and recognize these individual stories as the building blocks of our individual and collective identities. We work to teach our students to take what they know and have learned on their journeys and to use this knowledge as a tool to improve our local and global communities by being EMPOWERED to act for social justice and advocacy. It is my core belief that there are no better future leaders for our city, our state, and, our country than the amazing young people who make up the Newcomers High School student body. 

Here are some specifics about Newcomers so you can get to know us:

  • Newcomers High School has nearly 1,500 students from all over the world. Commonly spoken languages in our school include Spanish, Arabic, Bangla, Portuguese, Ukrainian, Albanian, Tagalog, French, and Tibetan to name some; 
  • We are among the highest recipients, citywide, of graduates with the Seal of Biliteracy on their diploma. In June of 2023, 50% of our graduating class earned this distinguished seal on their diploma;
  • We have a range of PSAL sports and club sport opportunities including Tennis, Soccer, Swimming, Basketball, Cricket, Handball, Running and Volleyball;
  • 11th and 12th-grade students have the opportunity to take college credit-bearing courses through our college now partnership with CUNY- LaGuardia Community College;
  • We offer both studio art and have a theater arts program. We have an amazing auditorium that seats over 900 people;
  • We offer 11 Advanced placement Courses and provide opportunities for all of our students to begin advanced coursework in the 10th grade;
  • We are a Community School and have partnerships with the Center for Supportive Schools and Common Point Queens. This allows us to provide wrap-around services for students and caregivers including college trips, mental and physical health services, and robust extracurricular and tutoring opportunities;
  • We partner with a local NYC DOE Adult Education site to prove Adult ENL and GED classes in our building; 
  • We offer our own PM school and Saturday programs to help our students earn credits and graduate on time. 

Newcomers High School is a special community. Students are known by caring adults when they are with us. We make personal connections with caregivers and view this work as a partnership. 

I look forward to an amazing year. Thank you for entrusting your children with us. It is an honor we take seriously. 

In service and with gratitude, 


Elizabeth Messmann, Principal