Education is a cornerstone of Carbondale at all levels. Each educational institution, from pre-kindergartens to the university level, offers programs and opportunities to challenge, inspire and equip students for both current and future success. A variety of school systems, both public and private, work to educate students.
There are four public school systems serving Carbondale and the immediate area. Elementary and middle school students are served by three different systems: Carbondale Elementary District 95 serves students within most of the city limits. The Giant City and Unity Point districts serve students residing south of the Southern Illinois University campus.
Students from all three districts as well as those from nearby DeSoto attend Carbondale Community High School (District No. 165). Each district is administered by its own superintendent and board of education.
The success of Carbondale Community High School students and alumni has earned the school recognition and respect as one of Illinois’ top institutions year after year.
Always among the top downstate high schools in scoring on the Prairie State Achievement Exams, CCHS utilizes talented and caring instructors, community involvement and cooperative arrangements with Southern Illinois University Carbondale and John A. Logan College to maximize classroom effectiveness and student achievement. CCHS students are recognized each year for achievements inside and outside of the classroom in athletics, scholar bowl competitions, public speaking and more. The school’s award-winning music department has ranked as Illinois’ No. 1 or No. 2 program in each of the last five years.
More than 96 percent of all CCHS students graduate and more than 55 percent attend a four-year college or university, with 41 percent attending a two-year institution. The high school boasts more than 25 different languages spoken by the diverse student body and, through a unique agreement with a regional healthcare provider, an in-house health center provides services to the entire CCHS family.
For families desiring a private or parochial education for their students, several options are available.
Brehm Preparatory School is a small, fully accredited, not-for-profit coeducational boarding school for junior high, high school and post-graduate students with learning disabilities and differences, employing a staff of 150. Brehm limits its focus to just 90 students in order to provide the attention and service students deserve.
Carbondale New School is a privately owned and operated school offering quality, progressive education for children in kindergarten through eighth grade. For more than 30 years, Carbondale New School has offered small class sizes which allow children to learn at their own pace. A strong sense of community among faculty, students and parents is a hallmark of the school, which maximizes students’ intellectual, social and emotional growth.
Trinity Christian School provides a high standard of academic excellence from a biblical worldview for grades K4 through high school. Trinity’s goal is to provide support to Christian families and their churches in educating students for lifelong learning by emphasizing a classical perspective in education, integrated with the truth of scripture.