Below are profiles featuring the top 20 high schools in the Atlanta Metropolitan Area. In order to be featured as a Top High School, the school must have a 2010 Education.com TestRating of 10 out of 10.  The TestRating compares a school's standardized test scores for a given year with scores from other schools in the same state. Find your school and see how it compares.

 

Brookwood High School

Gwinnett County School District

There's no hiding Brookwood High School's school pride. You can see it in the number of students filling the bleachers at athletic events, the community members showing up at school events, and the involvement of students in extracurricular activities.

 

The school encourages each student to find a place to become involved on campus and works to help all students become leaders in the school and community. Instead of the traditional elected Student Government Association, the school welcomes all students to become involved in student government, and has over 300 students participants. The SGA is also implementing a student engagement program called Raising Student Voice Program (RSVP), where students become involved in the community to learn about being a good citizen.

 

In keeping with the tradition of academic achievement, the school has a high AP Exam pass rate, offers many AP courses, and has over 500 students enrolled in Latin. Students can further their interests through specialized electives in music technology, Forensics and Biotechnology.

 

Additionally, Northview High School has very popular fine arts and performing arts programs, including drama, dance, and music. The school places a high priority on athletics and has won over 50 state championships since it open its doors 30 years ago.

 

“Our staff is dedicated, stable, and determined to make a positive difference in the lives of our students. We have a tremendous culture of spreading goodwill,” said Debra Dee, Principal of Brookwood High. “Our students are respectful and appreciative of our teachers.”

 

 

Buford High School

Buford City School District

 

Buford High School has a long tradition of excellence dating back to 1948. The school’s motto is “excellence in academics, athletics, and the arts” and the school backs it up with exceptional programs in all three areas.

 

The school has impressive test scores and offers many AP courses. The school's band program receives high ratings in competitions and is often asked to perform at special events.

 

Athletics play a large part in school culture and the school boasts many state championship titles. The football team has a winning history and often competes for state titles. Other strong sports teams at the school include the girl’s softball and boy’s baseball team.

 

As stated on the school website, the mission of Buford High School is to, "empower students to reach their full potential as lifelong learners and effective members of society by inspiring them to think, to achieve, and to care."

 

 

Chattahoochee High School

Fulton County School District

 

Chattahoochee High School has a tradition of excellence and high achievement. The school is very diverse and visitors comment that the lunchroom has a United Nations feel to it. Many graduates go on to attend Ivy League colleges and Principal Duncan was named the Principal of the Year in 2008 for the entire state of Georgia.

 

One of the unique features on campus is the outdoor complex where students reclaim water and work with wildlife to study the effect of turning retention ponds into ecosystems. The school hopes that in addition to students gaining hands-on experience with advanced science concepts, the project will have a larger impact on the community.

 

The school holds many athletic state championship titles, including a recent top honor in football. The Debate team is ranked second in the nation, and those more musically-inclined can play in one of top orchestras in the country. The school offers five different foreign language programs and is the only school in Georgia teaching Korean.

 

“Every kid can find a place to fit in at Chattahoochee High School, whether they are academically, musically, or athletically gifted,” said Mr. Tim Duncan.

 

 

Collins Hill High School

Gwinnett County School District

 

The Collins Hill High School is a community school that provides excellent programs before and during class hours, as well as after the school day ends. The school boasts a strong academic environment, and offers both honors and AP courses to its student body of almost 4,000.

 

Volunteerism is one of the school's focuses; the campus hosts a Volunteer Center, which helps students coordinate volunteer opportunities. Athletics are also a large part of school culture, and in the past decade the school has won over 38 state championships in various sports.

 

The students in the fine arts program often receive individual recognition at the state and national level. The Marching Band and Color Guard have also taken top honors at many competitions. Other top performing programs at the school include the foreign language and science departments.

Collins Hill is more an extension of the community than a school located in the community,” said Glenn McFall, Principal of Collins Hill High School. “The campus facilities are in use every day of the week serving the needs of a plethora of organizations, representing all ages and diverse interests.”

 

 

Creekview High School

Cherokee County School District

 

Students come first at Creekview High School, where the administration makes decisions based on what is best for the students, not what is easiest for the staff. As part of this philosophy, the teachers focus extensively on helping students master course material through extra tutoring and re-teaching when necessary.

 

The school has many different AP courses and has a high pass rate for the exams. Students can also take career technical courses or enroll in the only Health Care Sciences program in the district to earn courses towards certifications and additional schooling. The school's Criminal Justice Program also has an excellent reputation, and the school partners with a local college to give students an opportunity to jump start into this career field.

 

To provide a well-rounded high school experience, the school offers an extensive fine arts program and is competitive on many different sports playing fields. The Media Center has been recognized as one of the top media centers in the state and works to integrate technology with instruction, such as offering Kindles for student checkout and coordinating cross-curriculum courses.

 

“I personally feel it is very important for kids to get involved outside of classes and we work hard to make sure that all our programs provide kids with worthwhile experience from sports to club to fine arts,” said Dr. Bob Eddy.

 

 

Early College High School at Carver

Atlanta Public School District

 

The students at Early College High School at Carver, many of whom are the first in their family to attend college, earn college credit by attending courses at Georgia State University.

 

During ninth and tenth grades, students learn the study and academic skills necessary for taking courses at the college-level. As juniors and seniors, the students sit alongside college students in the classroom at Georgia State. As a result, many students graduate with an Associates in Arts degree in addition to a high school diploma.

 

Since there are only 100 students per grade, the staff is able to give one-on-one support to each student and develop close relationships. The high school students are paired up with Georgia State students for mentoring, and the school helps educate the parents about the transition to college through a program called the “Parent University.”

 

Students at Early College can play on a number of sports teams or sign-up for a wide variety of clubs. The kids play on sports teams and attend club meetings with students from the other three high schools at the Carver Campus.

 

“Our students receive great grades and that is what strengthens us and let us know we are on the right track. Early College kids are go-getters,” said Ms. Thorton, the Principal of Early College High School at Carver.

 

 

Harrison High School

Cobb County School District

 

Visitors to Harrison High School often comment that the atmosphere on campus is very friendly and welcoming. The school works to provide excellent programs that allow students opportunities in areas they want to pursue. The academic programs are strong and the AP program has recently grown both in the amount of courses offered and the number of students participating. There are many outstanding programs throughout the school that help students challenge themselves in their area of interest. These range from an exceptional PE program to cutting-edge career technical programs.

 

A video broadcasting program was recently launched on campus with a specialized facility and is popular among the students. The band and arts programs also consistently win awards from competitions and performances. Each year the school hosts a community service day to help the students understand the importance of giving back.

 

“I have always been impressed about the community and the togetherness and how we all work together to help the kids be as successful as they can,” said Principal Donnie Griggers. “Over the years we have been successful, academically and athletically, with a servant’s heart for community service.”

 

 

Lassiter High School

Cobb County School District

 

When students and visitors pull into the parking lot of Lassiter High School, there is a banner that says “The Tradition Continues” which illustrates the long tradition of excellence and school spirit. Students are involved in the school and community in a variety of ways, including raising money for breast cancer, helping needy families, and working with political action groups.

 

To provide challenges for all students at the school, Lassiter High School offers courses in honors, Advance Placement and Career Tech. Over 20% of the students take an AP exam and the SAT scores are among the top in the state of Georgia.

 

The music department at the school is nationally recognized, especially the chorus and orchestra. The band has performed in all over, including in the Rose Parade and the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade, and has won the Grand National Champions Award. The school also has a strong athletic program and holds many state and regional championship titles in various sports.

 

"Whether it's academically, athletically, or musically, the individual and team recognitions that our students, coaches, or conductors receive are consistently at the highest level in Georgia," said Chris Richie, Principal of Lassiter High School.

 

 

McIntosh High School

Fayette County School District

 

During the school day, over 350 golf carts are parked on McIntosh High School's campus. Since the school is located in a planned community surrounded by miles of golf cart paths, many students drive their family golf cart to school. Over 90% of the students attend a post-secondary school, and over half of the students in recent graduating classes received the HOPE scholarship, which rewards academic excellence and helps with tuition for those attending college in Georgia.

 

The school offers over 18 Advance Placement (AP) classes and gifted coursework in science, math and English. The school has a Career-Technology-Agricultural Education field that offers construction, graphic arts, technology, business, health occupations, family consumer science, and teacher education classes.

 

Many of the extracurricular programs at the school regularly perform at the highest level and students can select from many different arts programs, such as band, art and orchestra. The drama program regularly performs one-act plays, full length plays, and musicals. The dance team has a history of excellence and is often ranked near the top of the chart both regionally and nationally. McIntosh School is known for its excellent soccer program and also has successful lacrosse, cross country, basketball, swimming, tennis, and golf teams.

 

“Our teachers establish high expectations. Our parents expect exemplary instruction and outcomes, and our students pursue excellence,” said Lisa Fine, Principal of McIntosh High School.

 

 

Milton High School

Fulton County School District

 

At Milton High School, it is common for student’s grandparents to have attended the school, and many teachers were once students there themselves. Since the school opened in 1921, Milton High has been an important part of the community and the school has a strong sense of tradition. Milton High School works to serve all students from those on career pathways to students heading to college after graduation. The school has a 90% rate of college enrollment, and students looking for a challenge can enroll in AP courses, of which over 20 are offered.

 

Band is a very popular program at the school and Milton has a nationally recognized chorus. One of the more unique offerings at the school is a Circus program, where students learn to perform in a Cirque du Soleil style. The drama program gives students the opportunity to perform in a black box theater with the latest in sound and lighting technology.

 

Athletics are important on campus and the school has many championship trophies in their trophy case. In addition to 19 varsity athletic programs offered, all students can participate in club sports such as fencing, rugby and crew.

 

“We have a long tradition of education and our roots run deep of excellence achieved in both academics and athletics,” said Cliff Jones, Principal of Milton.

 

 

Northgate High School

Coweta County School District

 

Northgate High School provides many opportunities for students both in and out of the classroom. Students can select from four study programs: College Preparatory with Distinction, College Preparatory, Career/Technical with Distinction, and Career/Technical. A dual diploma with College Preparatory and Career/Technical is also available to students. The school also offers AP courses for student looking to earn college credit through taking AP exams.

 

Northgate offers several career-oriented electives, including fashion design and construction course. Students interested in pursuing a career in nursing can also take Health Occupations classes at West Central Technical College.

 

Athletic teams are competitive on campus, with several state championship titles held by the school, including competitive cheerleading and softball. Students can try-out for Cross country, volleyball, softball, football, basketball, wrestling, swimming, cheerleading, baseball, soccer, tennis, golf, and track.

 

"The goal of the school is to "provide high level, engaging work for all learners and leaders to meet the needs of all stakeholders."

 

 

 

 

 

Northview High School

Fulton County School District 

 

Northview High School celebrates the diversity of the school and provides an academically challenging curriculum for its students. The school offers many AP classes and has numerous students selected as National Merit Finalists and Semi-Finalists each year.

 

Over 98% of the students go on to attend a two-year or four-year college after graduation and the school has the third highest SAT scores of Georgia high schools. The school has state-of-the-art facilities with laboratories, technology integrated throughout campus, an outdoor campus, and top-notch sports facilities.

 

Performing arts programs are outstanding; the orchestra received national reviews and the theater company once performed at the Fringe Festival in Scotland. Through events such as Black History Month assemblies and International Night, the school brings the students and community together to learn more about others. In addition to planning events, the student organization on campus offers cyber-bullying workshops for all freshmen, and helps to encourage conflict resolution through a year-round meditation program.

 

“Our school is all summed up in our mission: To instill excellence in academics, arts, and athletics,” said Pamela Spalla, principal of Northview.

 

 

Pope High School

Cobb County School District

 

With over 50% of the students playing on a sports team and over 90% of the students participating in a club, One of Pope High School's hallmarks is student involvement. The school gives the students a lot of responsibility and believes that the more responsibility they are given, the more responsible the students will act.

 

The school benefits from a high level of parental involvement, and teachers work together in teams to collaborate across subject areas. To help students have time to get extra help, there are two academic opportunity periods each week. The academics at Pope High are top-notch – a large number of students take AP courses and AP exams have a high pass-rate.

 

The athletic programs have dramatically improved in recent years and the school now has one of the best overall athletic programs in the district. The school is also heavily focused on community service, where the students log a high number of community service hours and once raised over 20K for a local foundation.

 

“We drive home to our students that they should work hard, do the right thing and not be a “me” person,” said Richard Beaulieu, Principal of Pope High School.

 

 

Riverwood High School

Fulton County School District

 

At the Riverwood International Charter School, students focus on international studies and are offered an academically challenging curriculum. The diverse student body at Riverwood represents over 40 different countries.

 

Over 51% of the students participate in the International Baccalaureate Program (IB). The school’s website describes the IB program at Riverwood International as “a challenging four-year curriculum that focuses on world issues, global economics, cultural awareness and field experiences such as internships and travel.” IB students can also earn an International Baccalaureate Diploma at the end of four years.

 

In keeping with the school's international focus, Riverwood has a strong foreign language program which offers several languages, including Japanese. Students can take over 15 different AP courses and many students participate in the Advanced Placement program at the school. The school also offers Career and Technical focuses in Broadcast Video Production, Business Education, Family and Consumer Science, Pre-Engineering Technology, and Culinary Arts. The school offers a comprehensive athletic program and many activity clubs.

 

The vision for the school is to “deliver a challenging curriculum that gives all students the tools needed to be successful, contributing members of our nation and the world.

 

 

Sequoyah High School

Cherokee County School District

 

The community support at Sequoyah High School helps create an atmosphere where kids want to go to school. With only two principals in the 21 years since the school opened, Sequoyah High School has strong school spirit and low staff turnover. The school has very high graduation rate, few discipline issues, and low student absences. While many schools have booster clubs for athletic teams, Sequoyah has booster clubs for most every activity, including drama, band, and debate. This helps students connect and partner with community members while pursuing interests.

 

The high school offers 18 AP courses, which is double the amount offered by other high schools in the district. The school places a high priority on academic achievement and offers the STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Math) program. Resources for special needs students are a top priority at the school and several programs are available on campus to support their development.

 

The performing arts program receives high marks with its award winning drama department and many musical offerings, including bands, orchestra, and several vocal groups. Students can also select from a variety of clubs including Ping pong, Spanish dance and Movie Review club.

 

“We have created a culture that is not only committed to academic excellence but takes into account individual need of students,” Elliot Berman, Principal.

 

 

Starrs Mill High School

Fayette County School District

 

Starrs Mill High School provides an academically challenging curriculum to its students. Over 94% of graduating students head to a four-year, two-year or technical college. Seniors can graduate with one of four types of diplomas; College Preparatory, College Preparatory with Distinction, Technology/Career, and Technology/Career with Distinction. A Fine Arts Endorsement is also given to those who earn four fine arts credits during their four years at Starrs Mill.

 

The school offers 16 Advanced Placement (AP) courses, and students can take up to three AP classes each year. During English, science, and foreign language class, ¼ of the instruction time is spent in computer labs. Technology/Career programs are available for students who wish to explore future careers in business, family and consumer science, technology, and health care. Students can also gain real work experience through the Youth Apprenticeship and Work program.

 

Athletics are strong at Stars Mill and the school recently moved into a new division. Recent championship titles include football, cheerleading, and swimming. The arts programs at the school have great reputations, especially band, chorus, drama, and visual arts.

 

 

The School of the Arts at Carver

Atlanta Public School District

 

 

At the School of the Arts at Carver, art education is woven throughout all areas of the school through specialty arts courses and integrating the arts into the core subjects. Different art forms are used to demonstrate mastery of core subjects, such as a geometric art projects in math or a dramatization of Macbeth in English Class.

 

In addition to only having 100 students per grade, each student has an adult adviser as the first point of contact for any issue. The administration has an open door policy with the students and each month there is a full school advisory, which is often led by the students. Each year over half of the students bring their parents to school for the Take Your Parent to School Day. Students can participate in a wide selection of athletic teams and extracurricular activities in combination with the other three schools on the Carver Campus.

 

Students can select from several different arts disciplines, including a harp program that is one of the few in the nation. The music industry program helps at-risk student learn the ins and outs of the music industry by producing and promoting a music CD for an artist.

 

“Our school is a caring community and we know all of our students by name,” said Dr. Pryor, Principal of The School of the Arts at Carver. “We use the child’s interest level in the arts to propel the student forward.”  

 

 

Walton High School

Cobb County School District

 

Walton High School offers challenging curriculum for students while also providing students with a variety of extracurricular activities.

 

The school has an extensive Advanced Placement program and offers 32 AP classes. Over 50% of the seniors at Walton pass at least one AP exam and the number of students taking AP courses has doubled in the past 10 years.

 

Music programs are popular with the students and the band, choir, and orchestra has performed at prestigious events, including the Tournament of Roses Parade. Students can also choose from 23 varsity sports and the school holds over 40 state championship titles in numerous sports.

 

The foreign language programs are strong, and the French and Latin programs have earned recognition. The academic teams at the school are also very strong. The Mock Trial, Model UN, Literary, Debate, and Science Bowl teams have taken top honors in recent competitions.

 

Walton High School's mission statement is to, “educate students who are well prepared to meet the challenges of their post-secondary goals. Walton High School pledges its resources to the development of the whole student, addressing academic, social, emotional, and career needs while fostering attitudes of good citizenship, cultural awareness, lifelong learning, and compassion.”

 

 

Woodstock High School

Cherokee County School District

 

 

Woodstock High School works to provide opportunities to all students through college-prep, vocational and technical courses. The school opened in 1996 with 750 students and now serves around 2500 students.

 

Students looking for an academic challenge can select from a variety of AP and honors-level courses. The Career Tech Department provides students with many options to learn career skills in areas such as Broadcast Video Production, Business, Family and Consumer Science, Marketing, Navy Jr. ROTC, Interior Design, Law and Justice, and Early Childhood Education.

 

Ninth graders at the school attend the Woodstock High School Wolverine Academy, where students get support during the transition to high school. Students struggling in core subjects will attend mandatory lunch tutoring to help raise their grades.

 

The performing arts department gets rave reviews from parents and students. Additionally, the band is very popular and has taken top honors at competitions. The drama department is also very active and puts on several productions each year.

 

 

Please note that only schools in the following Georgia counties were considered for this article: Barrow, Bartow, Butts, Carroll, Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, Coweta, Dawson, DeKalb, Douglas, Fayette, Forsyth, Fulton, Gwinnett, Haralson, Heard, Henry, Jasper, Lamar, Meriwether, Newton, Paulding, Pickens, Pike, Rockdale, Spalding, and Walton.