Phoenix, Arizona, is a city of contrasts, where ancient Native American traditions blend with a thriving modern metropolis. With over 1.6 million residents, it's also the fifth-largest city in the United States. As such, it's home to some of the most innovative businesses, vibrant cultural scenes, and breathtaking natural landscapes in the Southwest.
But for families with school-age children, Phoenix is also known for its high-quality education options. Numerous public, charter, and private schools are available to choose from. The city has approximately 453 public schools and 515 private institutions serving K-12 students.
What makes a school “good” is not always easy to define, as each student has unique needs, interests, and learning styles. That's why we've compiled a list of ten top-rated schools in Phoenix, based on a combination of factors. Those include academic performance, faculty experience, graduation rates, equity, and overall school experience.
We also considered GreatSchools test scores, parent and student reviews, and community feedback from Google and Nextdoor. Our list ranks the schools in ascending order, broken into three sections: elementary, middle, and high schools. Let’s dive in.
Best Elementary Schools
Kyrene De La Sierra School
1122 East Liberty Lane, Phoenix, AZ 85048
Kyrene de la Sierra School is a public elementary school in Phoenix, Arizona, in the Kyrene Elementary School District. The school serves students from preschool through fifth grade, with an enrollment of 556 students.
GreatSchools.org has given Kyrene de la Sierra School an overall rating of 9 out of 10. Precisely, 88% of students attain proficiency in English, 86% in math, and 90% in science. The school also offers a variety of courses and programs. Included are art courses such as drawing and painting; music courses such as band, choir, and vocal lessons; and performance arts such as poetry.
The student-teacher ratio at the school is 22:1, which is slightly higher than the state average of 19:1. However, all full-time teachers at the school are certified and have at least three years of experience. The school also has a psychologist, health assistant, and counselor on staff to support the needs of its students.
In a review, one parent praised the school for having an excellent environment for their children, with dedicated teachers who have helped them develop a love of learning and a willingness to try new things.
Overall, Kyerene De La Sierra School is an excellent choice for parents searching for an elementary school that provides a nurturing and supportive environment for all learners.
Horizon Honors Elementary School
16233 South 48th Street, Phoenix, AZ 85048
Horizon Honors Elementary School is a public charter school that provides a unique learning experience to its students across grades K-6. With a focus on “gifted education for all,” the school offers an integrated approach to education that emphasizes hands-on, real-life problem-solving experiences. With an enrollment of 834 students, it has a student-teacher ratio of 20:1, just slightly higher than the state average.
Horizon Honors Elementary School is highly rated on GreatSchools.org, with a perfect 10/10 overall rating. The school's standardized test scores are above average, with most students performing at or above grade level. Students perform exceptionally well in science, with 92% of students attaining proficiency, while English and math proficiency rates are 85% and 70%, respectively.
The school offers a variety of programs and activities for its students, including music courses, world languages courses, and a range of student clubs such as art, chess, cooking, dance, drama, recycling, and robotics.
Parents are delighted with the school's approach to academics, curriculum, and policies. They appreciate the focus on learning and growth, the availability of after-school activities, and the strong sense of community among parents.
Horizon Honors Elementary School provides an exceptional learning environment for students, making it an excellent option for families searching for an integrated approach to education that prepares kids for success in all aspects of life.
Desert Trails Elementary School
4315 East Cashman Drive, Phoenix, AZ 85050
Desert Trails Elementary School is a public school in Paradise Valley Unified District that offers education for grades PK-7 and ungraded students. With an enrollment of 599 students, the school has a student-teacher ratio of 17:1, below the state average.
The teachers at Desert Trails are highly experienced, with all full-time teachers being certified and having at least three years of teaching experience. The school also employs a full-time nurse and psychologist.
Desert Trails Elementary School is known for its strong academic performance, with above-average standardized test scores. The school receives an overall rating of 10/10 from GreatSchools.org. 84% of students attain English proficiency, while 84% achieve math proficiency. 93% of students achieve science proficiency, highlighting the school’s focus on STEM education.
In addition to its academic programs, Desert Trails Elementary School offers a variety of courses, programs, and student clubs to promote extracurricular interests and diverse learning opportunities.
With its experienced and dedicated staff, diverse academic programs, and focus on student wellbeing, Desert Trails Elementary School is an excellent choice for families in Phoenix seeking a well-rounded education for their children.
Alhambra Traditional School
5725 North 27th Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85017
Alhambra Traditional School is a K-8 public school in the Alhambra Elementary District serving 772 students. The school is dedicated to academic excellence through a back-to-basics curriculum, a caring learning environment, consistent discipline, and partnership among students, staff, and parents.
The school's students perform above average on standardized tests, with most students performing at or above grade level. In GreatSchools.org's review, Alhambra Traditional School received a 10/10 overall rating. 90% of students attain proficiency in math, 82% in English, and 91% in science.
Alhambra Traditional School has a student-teacher ratio of 24:1. 97% of teachers have at least three years of experience, and 100% are certified, ensuring that qualified and experienced educators teach students. The school also employs a full-time nurse.
According to parent reviews, Alhambra Traditional School provides a caring and helpful learning environment with great teachers and staff committed to the student’s success. The school is an excellent option for families searching for a holistic approach to education for their kids.
Best Middle Schools
Madison Traditional Academy
925 East Maryland Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85014
Madison Traditional Academy is a public school that offers a traditional, accelerated curriculum for students in grades K-8. The school, which is the only K-8 school in the Madison School District, has an enrollment of 821 students.
The school has received a 9/10 rating from GreatSchools.org and boasts standardized test scores far above the state average. The students at Madison Traditional Academy perform exceptionally well in math, English, and science, with 80% of students attaining proficiency in English, 87% in math, and 90% in science.
The curriculum at Madison Traditional Academy uses direct instruction techniques, whole-class instruction, and approved teaching methods. The Spalding Method is the basis of the school's language arts curriculum, while Saxon Math is the basis for the mathematics curriculum.
The student-teacher ratio at Madison Traditional Academy is 28:1, which is higher than the state average of 19:1. However, 94% of teachers at the school have at least three years of experience, and 100% of full-time teachers are certified. In addition, the school has a part-time psychologist on staff.
Parents with children attending Madison Traditional Academy speak highly of the school, with one parent describing the teachers as “great” and “going above and beyond because they want to see their students succeed.” The parent also praised the school's advanced and rigorous curriculum.
Madison Traditional Academy is an excellent pick for parents searching for a rigorous academic program to challenge their children.
Villa Montessori Charter School
4535 North 28th Street, Phoenix, AZ 85016
Villa Montessori School-Phoenix Campus is a public charter school founded in 1964, providing education to students from toddler through middle school. With a GreatSchools.org rating of 9/10, Villa Montessori School-Phoenix Campus is widely recognized for its excellent academic performance. The school has an enrollment of 495 students and a student-teacher ratio of 19:1.
Villa Montessori School-Phoenix Campus's curriculum is based on the Montessori approach to learning and living, tailored based on the ages and stages of human development. The school encourages students to become confident, competent, creative, and life-long learners.
According to GreatSchools.org, Villa Montessori School-Phoenix Campus students perform far above the state average in English, math, and science, with 67%, 59%, and 84% of students attaining proficiency, respectively.
Parents with their children enrolled in Villa Montessori School-Phoenix Campus have provided positive reviews of the school. They have described the school as nurturing and welcoming.
Villa Montenssori-Phoenix Campus is an ideal choice for parents in Phoenix searching for a personalized and tailored curriculum for their child.
Valley Academy – Reid Traditional Schools
1520 West Rose Garden Lane, Phoenix, AZ 85027
Reid Traditional Schools’ Valley Academy is a public charter school that offers a traditional, back-to-basics education for students in grades K-8. The school is known for its high academic and behavioral standards and has received a 9/10 rating from GreatSchools.org.
The enrollment at Valley Academy is 776 students, and the student-teacher ratio is 23:1, marginally higher than the state average of 19:1. However, the school boasts a high percentage of certified full-time teachers, with 75% of the staff holding certification. The school also has a full-time nurse.
Valley Academy's curriculum is textbook-driven and standards-based, focusing on individual accountability and a challenging, sequential, teacher-directed approach. The school offers courses in traditional academic subjects, art, music, and world languages.
Students also have the opportunity to participate in various clubs, including art, chess, and science, and sports such as basketball, flag football, soccer, track, softball, and volleyball.
Parents of students at Valley Academy speak highly of the school, citing its strong academic program, nurturing environment, and supportive staff. The school's back-to-basics approach to education appeals to families who value a traditional education for their children.
Best High Schools
Great Hearts Academies – Anthem Prep
4801 East Washington Street, Phoenix, AZ 85034
Great Hearts Academies – Anthem Prep is a public charter school located in Phoenix, Arizona, offering an honors-level liberal arts curriculum in the tradition of the finest independent private schools across the nation.
Serving grades K-12, the school has an enrollment of 814 students and boasts incredible scores in standardized tests. 74% of students achieve math and English proficiency, and 81% achieving science proficiency. The school is also far above the state average in college and career readiness metrics, with an impressive 100% graduation rate.
The school has a student-teacher ratio of 18:1, below the state average of 19:1, and 98% of teachers have at least three years of experience. However, only 27% of full-time teachers are certified.
Despite this, parents praise the school for its challenging and aggressive curriculum that teaches students to be critical thinkers. Additionally, former students have reported that college was easy because of what they learned at Anthem Prep.
Great Hearts Academies – Anthem Prep is an excellent choice for families seeking a rigorous, college preparatory education for their children.
11850 North 32nd Street, Phoenix, AZ 85028
BASIS Phoenix is a public charter school that serves students in grades 5-12. BASIS Phoenix offers a rigorous and challenging curriculum for its 709 students, featuring STEM-infused liberal arts programs.
The school posts high standardized test scores, with students consistently scoring above the state average. 91% of students attain proficiency in math and English, and an impressive 98% achieve proficiency in science. Additionally, the school has received a 9/10 rating from GreatSchools.org, further highlighting its strong academic reputation.
BASIS Phoenix offers a robust selection of 25 AP courses, with an AP course participation rate of 86%. The school also boasts a 100% 4-year high school graduation rate.
The student-teacher ratio of 14:1 is lower than the state average of 19:1, which allows for more individualized attention and support for students. Additionally, 55% of teachers have at least three years of experience, and 100% of full-time teachers are certified.
BASIS Phoenix is a top-tier school that is an excellent fit for students who don’t mind an intensive, academically-rigorous curriculum.
Phoenix Union Bioscience High School
512 East Pierce Street, Phoenix, AZ 85004
Phoenix Union Bioscience High School is a public high school in the Phoenix Union High School District. Nested within the Phoenix Biomedical Campus, the school serves 373 students in grades 9-12.
Phoenix Union Bioscience High school’s standardized test scores are above average. Specifically, 86% of students attained proficiency in math, 77% in English, and 76% in science. GreatSchools.org gives the school an overall rating of 9/10.
The school's SAT/ACT participation rate is 25%, higher than the state average of 18%. Phoenix Union Bioscience High School also has an 11% AP program participation rate, with courses like AP Spanish Language and Culture available to students. It also boasts of a 97% graduation rate.
The student-teacher ratio at the school is 16:1, lower than the state’s average. The small classes allow the teachers to provide personalized attention to each child. Additionally, all teachers in the school are certified and have more than three years of teaching experience.
The school is an excellent pick for families seeking a personalized yet challenging academic curriculum focusing on project-based learning.
Finding the Right School for Your Child in Phoenix
Phoenix is home to numerous top-rated schools that offer high-quality education to their students. Whether you're seeking a traditional academic environment or an innovative learning experience, the schools on this list have proven their dedication to academic excellence and student success.
Choosing the right school can be a crucial decision for families, and these top-rated schools are a great starting point for families looking for an outstanding education in Phoenix, AZ.
The image featured at the top of this post is ©Robert Kneschke/Shutterstock.com.