Top High Schools in the Portland, OR Metro (page 3)

Top High Schools in the Portland, OR Metro

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Updated on Aug 23, 2011


Riverdale High School

Riverdale School District 51J


Instead of feeling like a typical high school, Riverdale High School has the atmosphere of a small liberal arts college. With a student body of only 250, students receive individual attention from teachers and stay with the same set of teachers throughout their four years. Instead of offering a wide range of courses, the school focuses on studying topics in-depth and teaching critical thinking.


The school works to incorporate real world learning opportunities to give students a chance to apply knowledge, such as going to a primate lab, visiting art galleries, attending plays, and observing surgeries in a hospital.


Seniors work with a mentor and other peers to complete and present a Senior Exhibition, which is a capstone project answering a question that is important to the student. The school stresses community service and while each student needs a minimum of 90 volunteer hours to graduate, the average is around 180 hours. The school uses a no-cut policy for sports teams and has a variety of extracurricular options, including jazz band and Model UN.


“Kids can be themselves here. When you look around, you notice that you can be any kind of kid at this school and be accepted,” said Jody Haagenson, Communications Director at Riverdale High School.



School of Science & Technology

Beaverton School District 48J


Students must apply to attend this magnet school, where one can focus on science and technology while still receiving instruction in the humanities. A Focus teacher is assigned to each student to ensure that they perform to the best of their abilities and to provide a central point of contact for parents.


During their freshmen and sophomore years, students focus on basic core academic requirements in the “lower rotation.” During their junior and senior years, students can explore additional electives and also enroll in an internship program, where they work in a related career field each Friday. The school offers four AP courses and students can dual enroll at a local college for additional credit.


While sports and a marching band are not offered, the school does provide many other activities which students can participate in at their base school. At the campus, students can also play pickup basketball or join in the Frisbee team. Academic clubs are available, including science Bowl and Robotics along with service clubs, drama club and a Model UN team.


As stated on the school website, “All classes are designed to encourage thinking, knowledge, commitment to quality and excitement about learning.”



Sherwood High School

Sherwood School District 88J


The hallways at Sherwood High School showcase the student’s accomplishments, including course work, fliers for extracurricular events, athletic trophies, and academic awards. Sherwood works to keep students at the center of the school and make decisions that are best for the student body. As a cornerstone of the local community, the school hosts community musicals and athletic events which create a unique partnership.


The school gives a solid college preparatory foundation with a wide selection of AP courses available. The school is one of the few in the area that offer an Agriculture Science Program in which students can focus on animal science, horticulture, agriculture, floral design, and welding. Another unique class is the 3D art program that provides instruction in jewelry making.


Students can also select from a wide variety of interest clubs, such as Ballroom Dance Club, Cooking Club, and Ping Pong Club. The football team recently won a state championship, adding to the reputation of Sherwood's popular athletic programs, while the Future Farmers of America Club consistently earns high marks.


“SHS is truly a significant part of the Sherwood community. We have developed strong ties with parents, businesses, local government and other stakeholders.” said Michelle DeBoard, Principal.


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