Jacksonville, Florida, is sometimes called “The Flip Side of Florida.” According to the tourism website, Florida became a U.S. territory in 1821 after being settled by both the Spanish and the French. The land that made up Jacksonville was named after the then governor and one-day president Andrew Jackson in 1822.
Not only is this city known for its long beaches and endless sunshine, but it's also home to several highly populated and large schools. Most of the local schools are a part of the Duval County Public School system, though there are also many private school options throughout the city.
While Jacksonville may seem significant by the numbers and the land it covers, the schools in the area have an immense amount of opportunities they can offer to their students. Here's everything you need to know about the largest schools in Jacksonville, Florida.
Florida State College at Jacksonville
101 W State Street, Jacksonville, FL 32202
With eight locations throughout Duval and Nassau County, along with online classes that can be accessed globally, Florida State College at Jacksonville is a convenient and easily accessible way to further your education. FSCJ is also affordable, ranking among the top fifty most affordable public four-year degree institutions in the nation. Additionally, the college opened its doors in 1965 with just 2,610 students under the name of Florida Junior College. It's now grown to over 40,000 students annually, with 13 bachelor's degree options, 45 associate degree options, and over 100 technical certifications available.
With its impressive degree options and certifications available, it's no wonder Florida State College has some pretty successful alumni. Let's take a look at just a few of those noteworthy names:
- Tim McGraw, Singer
- Ashley Greene, Actress
- John Rutherford, U.S. Representative
University of North Florida
1 UNF Drive, Jacksonville, FL 32224
Another option for a higher education institution within Jacksonville is the University of North Florida. UNF is located between downtown and Florida's beautiful beaches on a campus that stretches over 1,300 acres. The school enrolled over 16,000 students in 2022, making it possible to offer smaller class sizes and more individualized attention. Students can also choose from more than 200 various clubs and activities and there are 19 athletic teams on campus. Additionally, UNF has been awarded the Community Engagement Classification from the Carnegie Foundation. This award is only given to the top 5% of universities in the country.
Sandalwood High School
2750 John Promenade Boulevard, Jacksonville, FL 32246
Known as “Saint Nation,” Sandalwood High School is one of the largest schools in Jacksonville. It enrolled 2,645 students during the 2022-23 school year. With a focus on excellence, the school has been able to earn an “A” rating for four straight years from the Florida Department of Education and has a 99% graduation rate. They also offer numerous programs and clubs for students, including AFJROTC, early college/dual-enrollment opportunities, an I.T. academy, and programs for culinary arts and hospitality, along with several athletic programs.
Sandalwood High School has gained a stellar reputation through its various programs and clubs, as well as high-quality academics. The school also has quite a few successful alumni. Here are just a few of those noteworthy individuals:
- Chris Jones, NFL Player for the Tennessee Titans
- Reuben Brigety, Former U.S. Representative to the African Union
- Sean Reid-Foley, MLB Pitcher
Mandarin High School
4831 Greenland Road, Jacksonville, FL 32258
Mandarin High School is another large school within the Duval County Public School system. The Duval County Public School system services over 129,000 students in the city of Jacksonville in 197 schools. It's the 20th largest district in the nation, allowing its schools to offer so many programs and opportunities for advancement. Like Sandalwood, Mandarin High offers numerous programs like athletics, band, National Honor Society, a medical academy, and the VyStar Academy of Business and Entrepreneurship.
Stanton College Preparatory School
1149 W 13th Street, Jacksonville, FL 32209-5699
Stanton College Preparatory School is also part of the Duval County Public School system, but what sets it apart is its number one ranking as the best high school in Jacksonville according to U.S. News and World Report. The doors to the school first opened in the 1860s, making it the oldest school in the entire state of Florida. Over the years, the school has been moved, rebuilt, and seen a change in curriculum. In 1981, Stanton College Prep became Duval County's first magnet school, graduating 54 seniors in 1984. Today, over 300 students graduate each year and numerous academic programs along with athletics and clubs are available to students.
Digital Academy of Florida
9143 Philips Highway, Suite 590, Jacksonville, FL 32256
Digital Academy of Florida school enrolls students in kindergarten through twelfth grade. It's one of the largest schools in Florida, with a student population of nearly 6,000, according to PublicSchoolReview.com. It's also a program of the Hendry County District Schools, which serves the rural ag communities in the Heartland of Florida. DAOF's unique approach offers a mix of in-person and online classes so that children can learn from home or anywhere they have an internet connection. The school breaks down its system and how classes are taught. The curriculum is divided into elementary school, middle school, high school, and a program called Stride Career Prep, which helps high school students discover what career is best for them while still earning their degree.
Florida Cyber Charter Academy
9143 Philips Highway, Suite 590, Jacksonville, FL 32256
Like Digital Academy, Florida Cyber Charter Academy is an online school that enrolls students in kindergarten through twelfth grade. FLCCA offers classes to any full-time Florida resident in these grades, and all of the classes are offered online. Additionally, this public charter school offers gifted and talented programs for eligible students, honors and credit recovery courses, and tailored English language learner support, along with other school clubs. Their programs are also broken down and available by grade. Elementary school, middle school, and high school all have their own curriculum and plans.
Kipp Jax Impact Academy
7000 103rd Street, Jacksonville, FL
As a relatively new school system to Jacksonville, Kipp Jax Impact Academy is a member of the Kipp-Jacksonville Public Schools system. The Kipp-Jacksonville system was founded in 2010 when it opened its doors to over 90 fifth graders. The system has now grown to enroll over 600 students in grades kindergarten through eight and Kipp Jax Impact Academy is one of four schools. Kipp Jax offers programs such as flag football, band, basketball, and track and field. The school also focuses on the KIPP Forward program, which helps students explore college and careers from a young age
The Bolles School
7400 San Jose Boulevard, Jacksonville, FL 32217
The Bolles School of Jacksonville is a day and boarding college prep school that enrolls students from Pre-K through twelfth grade. It's also the eleventh-largest private school in Florida, according to PrivateSchoolReview.com, enrolling around 1,750 students annually. Bolles was founded in 1933 and offers fine arts and athletics. The school also offers 23 college-level AP classes and seven world languages. What sets this school apart is its ability to host up to 90 students from around the globe as a boarding school and not just a day school. Bolles' campuses are in four separate locations, divided by two lower (elementary) schools, one middle school, and one upper (high school) campus.
This prestigious school is known for its excellent fine arts and athletics programs. Because of this, it also has some impressive alumni that roamed its halls. Here are just a few of those well-known names:
- Linden Ashby, Actor
- Mac Jones, Football Quarterback
- Amelia Lewis, LPGA Golfer
2701 Hodges Boulevard, Jacksonville, FL 32224
Providence School is a private, Christian school in Jacksonville. Its sixty-four-acre campus services over 1,600 students in grades Pre-K through twelfth. Academics are of high importance to the school which saw a 100% college acceptance rate in 2022. The school also offers 30 Honors, 19 AP, and five Dual Enrollment Courses. Additionally, Providence has strong athletic teams with 59 state championship appearances.
Finding the Right School for Your Child
Are you looking to find a school on the flip side of Florida in the historic city of Jacksonville? From cutting-edge academic programs to a vibrant extracurricular scene, the largest schools in this city focus on growth, learning, and personal development. The Duval County Public Schools system and the numerous other school programs surrounding the city serve a large number of students. The schools listed here merely scratch the surface of the various opportunities that Jacksonville's educational institutions offer to their students. You're sure to find the best fit for you and your child in the Jacksonville area!
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