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Our Guide to Schools in St. Louis


Article by City Lifestyle

Photography by Shutterstock

St. Louis schools have lots to offer your students.

Elementary, middle, and high school options are available, depending on the age and grade level of your children. You can choose to enroll in a public school in your district or search for private school or religious options to better fit your needs. 

Learn about all the choices in the area so you can be sure you're selecting the best choice for your family. 

St. Louis School Districts

School districts in St. Louis are made up of several different factions. Each one caters to a different area within the city, with bussing options available for those who live within the vicinity.

Consider each of the St. Louis school districts and their locations to see which one is right for your child. You may opt to apply for a choice or magnet school if it falls outside of the district where you reside.

St. Louis High Schools

High school is intended for ninth- through 12th-grade students. At most high schools, you'll find much more than academics. Athletics, band, choir, orchestra, clubs, and other extracurricular activities are also available.

Many require tryouts before you're approved to join. Be sure your student has an updated physical if they intend to play sports.

Be sure to check with your school about the clubs available. Some are intended for anyone to join, such as book club, while others, like Student Council, are designed for those elected to serve.

A few high schools in the city include:

East St. Louis Schools

If you're located in East St. Louis, you have a slew of schools available to you, depending on your grade level. Some elementary options are available for students in grades kindergarten through fifth grade.

Middle schools are available to children in grades 6 through 8:

East St. Louis Sr. High School serves the final four grade levels, 9–12.

Public Schools Information

There's some important information to consider if your child will be attending public school. You'll need details on how to register, transportation services, and the school calendar.


You will need to register your child with the school of your choosing.

You can visit the administration building of your chosen district. You will need your child's birth certificate, immunization records, previous school transcripts if applicable, and proof of residency.


Your school staff should speak with you about whether or not you require transportation. You can drive your child to school or seek bussing if you're within the district's routes.

A Choice School option is possible, allowing you to place your child in any school you desire and not just the one closest to your location. Bussing will not be available in most cases for this choice.


You should receive a calendar from your school's staff before the school year begins. Most schools in St. Louis begin near the third week of August and finish the year at the end of May.

Several days in June are reserved as emergency days for make-up time, such as if severe weather cancelled school on more than the allotted occasions.

Elementary Schools

Elementary schools provide education to young students, often in grades pre-K through 5. Some start with kindergarten and do not have pre-K available, so it's important to check. Schools offer a kindergarten registration process during the spring for enrollment.

A child must turn 5 before the first day of August during the school year they hope to attend. If their birthday surpasses this date, then pre-kindergarten is recommended. An assessment may be made to place the child into kindergarten even if their birthdate is later than the intended target timeframe if the parent chooses.

 Some elementary options in the area include:

Explore the options nearest to you to help make your choice easier.

Private Elementary Schools

Private school offers elementary options as well. Rossman School is one possibility. Students age 4 through sixth grade are served here.

Middle Schools in STL

Several middle school options are available in St. Louis.

They're intended for students in grades 6 through 8t. Not as many offerings are available as high school, but students do start to gain some access to sports and clubs. Some middle school options in the area are:

St. Louis Charter Schools

Charter schools are independently operated. They are essentially a public school, but tend to operate more like private schools do with uniforms and a more advanced curriculum.

The student-to-teacher ratio is smaller than that of a public school setting, giving each child the opportunity for one-on-one attention. You must apply to these schools and wait for lottery results to see if your student is chosen to attend. Some charter school options in the city include Confluence Academies, Lift for Life Academy, KIPP St Louis, and Premier Charter School.

Private Schools for St. Louis Residents

Private schools have tuition costs and require uniforms, but are often advanced in their education techniques.

They have a smaller teacher-to-student ratio so each pupil gets the attention they need to thrive. A co-ed private high school is available at Bishop Dubourg High. It is part of the Archdiocese of St. Louis, but offers both a Catholic and Christian service. Marian Middle School is an all-girls option in the city that is part of the NativityMiguel Coalition.

Christian Schools

Christian schools in the area provide a Christ-based education. Your student will still receive courses in English, science, math, and social studies. There will just be an additional religious course to take that helps to foster their relationship with Christ.

Central Christian School is available in the area for elementary and middle school students, while Tower Grove Christian Academy is an option for all students, grades pre-k to 12th.

St. Louis Catholic School

A Catholic high school in St. Louis may be your ideal choice if you practice this faith and want a wholesome education for your child.

You have the option of choosing a co-ed facility or you can search for a boys- or girls-only building. St. Louis University High School is intended for boys while Rosati-Kain High School is available for girls.

Each of these schools requires tuition costs, but there are tuition assistance options available that you can discuss when applying.

Your child will receive a typical education at a Catholic school. Math, science, social studies, and language arts are still part of the required courses. However, there will also be religion-based curriculum to follow. The goal is to foster a strong foundation for faith that your student can continue to maintain on their own once their school years are behind them.

A dress code is put in place, along with other strict rules to dissuade students from engaging in activities that would go against their religious practices.

Catholic Grade School in St. Louis

Most Catholic schools in the area are intended for older students. However, a grade school option is available for those in grades kindergarten through eighth grade.

St. Louis Catholic Academy assesses each student to determine the child's knowledge and helps pinpoint where they should be placed. There is an application fee, tuition cost, and waiting list for schools of this nature.

St. Louis Boarding School

Boarding school is an option for independent students. They will live on campus and receive a high-quality education.

This type of school system teaches students how to be self-reliant. It is excellent preparation for college and the real world. There are designated dorm rooms on-site where students will sleep and study. Outside distractions are limited, with many rules in place for television and phone usage, sleepover policies, and curfews.

Thomas Jefferson is one boarding school option in the city. Students in grades 7 through 12 can attend. There are both boarding options and day school options. Students who choose to attend day school will not reside on campus. 

Principia School is another option, also offering boarding to middle and upper school students. Students do more than strengthen their foundational skills in math and reading. Artistic, digital, and visual communication is also learned to develop 21st-century skills necessary for today's world.

Summer School in St. Louis

You can speak with your child's school about the need for summer school and see if they have a program available.

Many offer it right in their building. Otherwise, look into summer camps in the area that offer educational programs.

Forsyth School, for example, offers Summer Discovery. Various programs are set up with different tuition costs, based on length and requirements.

The school your child attends will have a major impact on not only their education, but also their life. Be sure to carefully consider each option and take a look at each school to determine the best place for your son or daughter. There are plenty of great schools in St. Louis to help your child receive the education they deserve.