How Many High Schools Are In The US in 2023? (Latest Data)

The High schools or the senior high schools provide education to students in the final stage of secondary education in the U.S.

Whenever the question arises of how many high schools there are in the U.S., the number fluctuates. 

You might be wondering the same question regarding the number of schools and the enrollment rates of students in public and private schools.

To answer these questions, Here in this article, I have compiled all the essential statistics relevant to High schools in the U.S., enrollments in public and private schools, charter schools etc.

Before going to the article, below are some of the top picks for you.

Key Findings: High School In The U.S.

  1. There are total of 20,469 public and private high schools in the US.
  2. The U.S. comprises about 130,930 K-12 schools as of 2020. 
  3.  There are around 97,568 public schools and 32,461 private schools, according to research in 2021. 
  4. The rate of enrollment at U.S. schools slightly rose between the year 2020 to 2021 (census.gov). 
  5. The federal, state and local governments spend around $734.2 billion on public schools, i.e., $14,484 per pupil. 
  6. Approximately 10% of U.S. schools are private, and around 25% of the students in the United States go to private schools.
  7. Around 5.06 million students enrolled in secondary and High schools in the year 2020. 
  8. There were 7,457 charter schools throughout the United States from 2019 to 2020.

Public High Schools In The U.S. 

Public Schools are educational institutions that receive funding from the federal, state, and local governments. 

The main aim of public schools is to ensure that education is available to all children, even those with financial difficulties. 

How Many High Schools Are In The U.S. - Overview

Below are some of the important statistics related to public schools that you may go through. 

  1. The number of Public Schools in the United States was demonstrated to be 97,568 for the year 2019-2020. While the number of public schools between the years 2008 to 2010 was found to be 98,817
  2. As per the U.S. news, there are around 24000 public high schools in 50 states and the District of Columbia as of 2022.

Below is the data to learn more about public schools and their enrollments.

Enrollment In Public School.

  1. Around 49.5 million students enrolled in public schools from prekindergarten to 12th grade, and 15.4 million attended grades 9th to 12th in the fall of 2021.
  2. The average enrollment of public schools is around 528 students per school, and it is estimated to increase at a rate of 23.9%. 

The data below shows students’ enrollment in the public school as per ethnicity for the years 2020 and 2021.

Sr.No. EthnicitiesEnrollments (In Millions)
1White23.6 million
2Hispanic13.83 million
3Black7.64 million
4Asian2.74 million
5Two or more races2.16 million
6American Indian/Alaska Native.0.48 million
7Pacific Islanders0.19 million 

Source: NCES.

Spendings.

  1. For the academic years 2019 and 2020, the public elementary and secondary schools projected a per-student expenditure of $13,440. 

The given data represent the state-wise spending on public schools.

Sr.NoStatesSpendings (In Dollars)
1New York$24040
2District of Columbia$22759 
3Connecticut $20635
4New Jersey$20021
5Vermont$19340

Source: educationdata.org.

  1. As per UNESCO, the United States spends around 11.6% of public funds on schools, which is less as compared to the international benchmark of 15%. 
  2. According to the report by EDI (2021), The United States ranks fifth in terms of the funds provided per pupil among the 37 developed nations in the OECD (Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development).

Below are a few government spending on public schools, recorded by EDI (2021).

  1. The federal government provides a total amount of $57.34 million or $1,131 per pupil.
  2. The State government provides a total amount of $344.0 billion or $6,785 per pupil. 
  3. The total amount of $322.9 billion, or $922, is provided by the local government. 

Public School Statistics By State. 

  1. California, Texas, Florida, New York, and Illinois have the maximum public school enrollments as compared to other U.S. states. (EDI 2021)
StatesNumber Of Public SchoolsEnrollment In A MillionFall In Enrollment Since 1990 (In%)
California10,430.6.22 million. 26.7%
Texas8,975.5.9 million.60.6%
Florida4,1812.91 million52.9%
New York1,796. 2.7 million 3.9% 
Illinois4,345.1.9 million8.8%

Source: EDI,2021, Statista (2019).

  1. California State has the maximum number of public schools, i.e. 10,430 (as per Statista 2019), with an enrollment of about 6.22 million students. 

Private High Schools In The U.S. 

Private schools are institutions that do not receive funding from the government; rather than they are funded by tuition fees from students, donations and private grants. 

  1. Around 22,283 private high schools exist in the United States
  2. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, there were around 33,600 private schools in 2013-2014 in the United States. 

Most private schools in the United States have religious orientations. To learn more, you can check the below data.

The table below represents the number of U.S. private schools according to religious orientation for the year 2017-18. 

Common Religious Orientations.Number of Schools
Roman Catholic6948
Christian (Unspecified)4209
Baptist1569
Amish1474
Jewish 922
Lutheran Church Missouri Synod.868

Source: NCES Private School Universe Survey. 

Enrollment In Private Schools. 

  1. According to the data from 2019 to 2020, the percentage of students in private schools per ethnicity is higher for Pacific Islanders than for other races. 

Given below is the enrollment of the students in the private schools as per ethnicity. 

Sr.No. EthnicitiesEnrollment (In Percentage) 
1Pacific Islander15%
2White12%
3Asian10%
4Other races10%
5Black 6%
6American Indian5%
7Hispanic4%

Source: NCES.

Spendings.

Private elementary schools cost less compared to private high schools. To get an insight into the private high school tuition fees, read on further. 

The following data shows the average tuition fees for the year 2020-2021 for Private high schools according to the states in the U.S. 

Sr.No. State Average High School Tuition (In Dollars) 
1Massachusetts $33,672
2Vermont $32,117
3District of Columbia$29,688
4New Hampshire$28,897
5New York $25,108
6Michigan $10,825
7Wisconsin$8,370
8Montana $8,117
9Kentucky$8,072
10Nebraska $7,798

Source: thinkimpact.com 

  1. The District of Columbia is the second most expensive state, and Vermont is the fourth most expensive state for average private tuition fees in the United States. 
  2. Nebraska is the second least expensive state for average private school tuition cost. 

Private School Statistics By State. 

Here are the number of private elementary and secondary schools in different states of the U.S. for the year 2019. 

StatesNumber Of Schools. 
California3,220
Florida2,510
Pennsylvania2,460
Texas1,740
New York1,660
Ohio1,290
Illinois1,280
New Jersey1,070
Virginia1,020
Wisconsin890
  1. California in the United States comprised 3,220 private elementary and secondary schools in the year 2019

Public vs Private High Schools. 

When both public and private schools are taken into consideration, it is found that the maximum number of students are enrolled in public schools than private schools. 

  1. Around 14.96 million students are enrolled in public high schools, whereas 1.3 million students are enrolled in private high schools in the year 2020, according to Statista. 

According to the data from High-schools.com, 

  1. There are about 33,370 public high schools in the United States.
  2. There are around 9,264 private high schools in the United States.
  3. Altogether, there are around 42,634 High schools in the United States.

The data provided below represents the high school enrollments for public and private schools from the year 2015 to 2030.

YearPublic School EnrollmentPrivate School Enrollment.
201515,0501,446
201615,1381,482
201715,1901,468
201815,1961,443
201915,2461,420
202015,3161,502
202115,458 1,512
202215,5751,535
202315,5741,542
202415,5021,484
202515,2851,464
202615,0211,458
202714,8541,455
202814,7601,463
202914,8631,397
203014,9921,311

Source: Statista. 

Charter Schools. 

Charter schools are independently operated public institutions that are free from certain rules and regulations as compared to traditional public schools. 

  1. Around 7% of public schools are charter schools, and 3.1 million elementary and high school students attend Charter schools. 

To determine the number of Charter schools in the United States, go through the table below representing the number of charter schools from 2008 to 2020.

YearNumber of Charter schools. 
2008-20094,694
2009-20104,952
2010-20115,274
2011-20125,696
2012-20136,079
2013-20146,465
2014-20156,747
2015-20166,855
2016-20177,011
2017-20187,193
2018-20197,427
2019-20207,547

Source: Statista. 

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Conclusion: How Many High Schools Are In The US? (2023)

The U.S. has and is still fulfilling its commitment to provide world-class education to students. The public schools have turned out to be a helping hand in providing more accessible and affordable learning to students. 

Whether it is a public or a private school, maintaining high educational standards and providing fair and equal opportunities to all students is the main aim. 

I hope the article helped you learn different facts and figures regarding public and private U.S. high schools.

Let us know your thoughts and queries in the comments section below. 

Ryan Harris

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