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Baltimore School For The Arts

Public | 9-12


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27 reviews of this school

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Posted May 11, 2012

The person who suggested admission is based on 'who you know' is mistaken. My daughter knew nobody at the school and we came from another state for her to audition. Acceptance for admission is absolutely based on the audition. Unfortunately, there are so very many wonderful and talented students with great potential competing for so few slots so not everyone who has talent can get in. Though our commute was a tough one and my daughter had many late nights leaving BSA after performances and rehearsals and learned to survive on little sleep these past four years, she has grown so much as an artist and is very well prepared for the rigors of the BFA program she's about to enter. BSA offers a very supportive peer environment within their art majors. So glad my daughter had the opportunity to attend such a special, well respected and highly rated arts school!
—Submitted by a parent

Posted March 1, 2012

My son is really happy attending BSA. The BSA students are diverse in their fine arts studies, their ethnicities, backgrounds, physical appearances and on.... The students are attending school there because they truly want to be there. And it's exciting for the parents to experience this with them.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted July 24, 2011

My goodness. Of course there are no sports, academic teams etc. It is an ARTS school. The xtra time aside from academics is spent on the student's art. Seems that you misunderstand what this school is all about.

Posted July 12, 2011

an extraordinary school! Kids apply and audition to enter, are judged entirely on the strength of their artistic potential, not on grades. Once they are accepted they are helped to get where they need to be academically -- additional help, tutoring, guidance, etc. Of course it is expected that they will work hard. Those that don't work hard generally leave the school. But the rewards are tremendous. The environment is about talent, and support of it. No harrassment, no bullying, no violence.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted May 19, 2011

I am a parent of a current freshman student and we LOVE BSA. It is definitely one of the best education based decisions that I have made for my son. I was afraid that BSA was far to focused on the arts and not enough on academics only to discover that I was WRONG. The advanced placement program is excellent and extremely challenging. The students are well behaved and help one another out a lot. They are like a family.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted March 5, 2011

I went to school here and it was the best high school experience, based on my experience and what others have told me about regular academic high schools. All of the teachers are highly qualified and go beyond the call of duty for the students. Class sizes are small so everyone can reach their personal potential whether it be academic or in their arts field. Students are admitted based on their audition, including their excitement to learn, and their ambition and drive to succeed. It is not an "easy" school to go to, and there is a evaluation that you must pass at the end of every year in your art field, in order to go on to the next year. I would recommend this school for any student who is passionate about the arts, and who can make the commitment to working many long hours to develop their skills. This school is perfect preparation for college, when I went to my four-year school in the arts, it was a piece of cake and there was no adjustment period as I was used to 4 hr studio classes, and critiques. The teachers here don't baby you, and I think that's what helped me develop and learn the most. I appreciated it.
—Submitted by a student

Posted May 6, 2010

This School is My Dream School, I Play Guitar I've Looked At Everything for this School and It's Just A Perfect school For Artists And i will be Auditioning
—Submitted by a student

Posted May 4, 2010

BSA is definitely a fine arts school, but there is a very strong culture which continually promotes some students, giving other students only a minimal, if any, chance to be in the spotlight. Questions or concerns from parents are not well-received. It is interesting that extracurricular activities received a 4-star rating, when actually there are no such activities--no sports, no academic teams, no clubs of any kind. Any after-school activities involve the student's art, with participation mandatory in most instances.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted August 31, 2009

As a recent graduate of this school, I can say with much confidence that BSfA is a very diverse school with excellent faculty. TWIGS students are admitted not because of the 'know who's who' philosophy, but because it's a great program. The faculty is committed to pulling the most out of the students, and rather than being offended, some people must realize that they are doing their jobs. This school has been one of the greatest experiences for me and I'm proud to be a graduate.
—Submitted by a student

Posted July 7, 2009

The individual who posted below that admission to BSA is dependent on 'who you know' is either simply sadly misinformed or is engaging in 'sour grapes' behavior. BSA is a true meritocracy: the most qualified young artists are admitted via audition.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted July 4, 2009

I have to disagree with the parent who thinks the audition is all about who you know. I have a child who got into BSA, but did not participate in TWIGS. As a public school employee I also work with many children who participate in TWIGS but did not get in. In fact, of the 10 children I know in TWIGS who applied to SFA, only two got in (for instrumental music). None of the actors got in and the rest of the musicians did not get in.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted March 16, 2009

I am sure this is a great school but it is all about who you know. It is really not about the audition. They say that you do not have to have experience. That is not true. Most of the students that are in the Twiggs Program that they offer are admitted. For this school to be in a very ethnic community, the population of the school is not very diverse. The arrogance of the staff is unbelievable!
—Submitted by a parent

Posted February 26, 2009

i love this school it is so good for people who has talent
—Submitted by a student

Posted February 12, 2009

I love the academics and they are above a lot of school's academic program. I am a music student and I am not only taught about things on my instrument, but I also learn singing, interpreting music, and learning the history of music.
—Submitted by a student

Posted December 5, 2008

I feel very blessed that 3 of my children have been accepted at BSA. 2 of my children were accepted in the visual arts program and 1 is in stage production. My daughter graduated 3 years ago and BSA fully prepared her for college. She stated that the rigorous program at BSA has helped her to breeze through her art classes at college. She was provided a very strong foundation in visual arts thanks to a superior staff of teachers. My sons also love the school. One graduates this year. He is a special needs student and the support he has received is incredible. My youngest is new to the school and says he feels safe and loves his new family (BSA). I love this school!
—Submitted by a parent

Posted June 8, 2008

This school is fabulous! Everywhere I went, there were students and teachers that were like one big family to each other. I couldn't imagine not going to the Bsfa!
—Submitted by a student

Posted April 8, 2008

I've came in as a Sophmore in Theatre, and everyone immedately made me feel like I was part of the family. All the teachers are behind you 100% in everything you do, and they have many resources for academic help, so you never have to feel like your on your own. I have found the best friends here. People wont judge you for what you wear or how you look, but more on how you present yourself and respect others. The good vibe here is contagious and I have caught the BSA bug.
—Submitted by a student

Posted November 6, 2007

My son is having such a great experience in this, his freshman year. He is studying visual arts and is thriving academically and artistically. Best of all, he has made lots of good friends already. The student body is made up of such interesting kids--kids he would never have run across otherwise. We could not be happier with the school and his experience.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted October 30, 2007

I feel so fortunate that my son was accepted into the School for The Arts. My son is where he needs to be. He has learned to like classical music and is excited about school. The teachers are very motivating and he has learned so much, and is doing much better academically than ever before. I think this school is awesome!
—Submitted by a parent

Posted August 21, 2007

This school is wonderful. My son was forced to adapt to what every one else was doing instead of being himself. At BSA he is free to let his crazy and silly personality out and feel good about himself.
—Submitted by a parent

Community ratings and reviews do not represent the views of GreatSchools nor does GreatSchools check their accuracy or verify the reviewers' identities. Use your discretion when evaluating these reviews.

About these ratings

The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.

The test results by subgroup show how the designated group of students is performing in comparison to the general population.

Grade level


The state average for Algebra was 84% in 2013.

68 students were tested at this school in 2013.









The state average for Biology was 83% in 2013.

80 students were tested at this school in 2013.








English II

The state average for English II was 83% in 2013.

82 students were tested at this school in 2013.








Scale: % proficient or advanced

About the tests

In 2012-2013 Maryland used the Maryland High School Assessments (HSA) to test students in English 2, Algebra, and Biology upon completion of each course. The HSA is a standards-based test, which means it measures how well students are mastering specific skills defined for each grade by the state of Maryland. Students are required to pass the tests in order to graduate. The goal is for all students to pass the tests.

Source: Maryland State Department of Education

Breaking down the GreatSchools Rating

GreatSchools Ratings for this school are based on 2012-2013 test results. Use the breakdown ratings below to compare types of students at this school. Learn more »

Student ethnicity

Ethnicity This school State average
Black 55% 35%
White 35% 42%
Asian or Asian/Pacific Islander 5% 6%
Hispanic 3% 12%
Two or more races 1% 4%
American Indian/Alaska Native 0% 0%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 0% 0%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

Student subgroups

  This school District averageState average
Students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch program 30%N/A42%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

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712 Cathedral St
Baltimore, MD 21201
Phone: (443) 642-5165


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