The public schools in Arlington serve a diverse community of students, just across the river from DC. While Arlington’s 26 square miles is rather small compared to counties in the rest of the state, the Arlington Public School system is the 15th largest in Virginia serving over 22,000 kids in Pre-K through 12th grade.
The schools in Arlington are highly ranked. In fact, the Washington Post Challenge Index listed all three Arlington public high schools in the top 1% of US high schools for the 7th year in a row.
Arlington is a diverse county, which is reflected in the schools in Arlington. The public school system serves students from 123 different countries, speaking 97 languages. Less than half of the students are white, about 30% are Hispanic, while African Americans and Asians each make up about 10% of the school population. In addition, over 30% of students receive subsidized meals. Despite the challenges of such a diverse population, in 2007 Washingtonian Magazine named the schools in Arlington “a national model for teaching diverse students.”
Over the last 25 years, construction projects have helped the schools in Arlington keep up with the changing population. Twenty-four schools were renewed and/or expanded, 7 schools were rebuilt, 1 new elementary school was constructed, the new Yorktown High School is nearing completion, and Wakefield High School construction is underway. Within a few years, the schools in Arlington will add 1,875 seats with the addition of 2 new elementary schools and additions to 3 existing elementary schools.
If you are considering moving your kids to Arlington or starting a new family in the county, you’ll be thrilled to know that Arlington ranked #4 in Parents Magazine’s 2011 rankings of best communities in the nation for raising a family. This probably has a great deal to do with the schools in Arlington.