Crash course in choosing a high school

Ready to pick a high school? Here's your go-to guide, including insider tips on touring, the lowdown on AP classes, and a handy school tour checklist.
YouTube video


10 key questions for high schools
Choosing a high school? Don’t do it without getting the answers to these questions! Format: Article

Free printable school tour checklist
Format: PDF

All about Advanced Placement (AP) courses and exams
The AP program gives students the opportunity to take college-level courses while they are still in high school. Format: Article

YouTube video

Inside Design Tech High School, a project-based learning school
Design thinking is a proven method of inquiry and exploration, like the scientific method. At this project-based school, students approach projects through the lens of design thinking. Format: Video (4:37)

YouTube video

Inside a performance-based learning school
Performance-based learning means that students get to learn at their own pace. See how adopting this model changed student outcomes at Lindsay High School.Format: Video (4:11)

What is International Baccalaureate?
Is IB right for your child? Learn how International Baccalaureate schools, programs, and classes work for elementary, middle, and high schoolers. Format: Article

Vocational and CTE schools
Is a vocational or career and technical education (CTE) program right for your child? Learn how some high schools integrate apprenticeship-like training into curricula. Format: Article

Should I send my child to a single-sex school?
Learn more about single-sex schools, and what advocates and detractors say. Then decide for yourself. Format: Article

About the author is a national nonprofit with a mission to help every child obtain a high-quality education that values their unique abilities, identities, and aspirations. We believe in the power of research-backed, actionable information to empower parents, family members, and educators to help make this happen. For 25 years, the GreatSchools Editorial Team has been working to make the latest, most important, and most actionable research in education, learning, and child development accessible and actionable for parents through articles, videos, podcasts, hands-on learning resources, email and text messaging programs, and more. Our team consists of journalists, researchers, academics, former teachers and education leaders — most of whom are also dedicated parents and family members — who not only research, fact check, and write or produce this information, but who use it in our daily lives as well. We welcome your feedback at