Renaissance School was recently ranked a Niche as the #1 Best High School for the Arts.  The 2019 Best Schools for the Arts ranking is based on rigorous analysis of key statistics and millions of reviews from students and parents using data from the U.S. Department of Education.

“The arts — including dance, music, theatre, media arts and visual arts — bolster the development of what are commonly referred to as deeper learning skills,” said Emily Workman, a contributing writer and former manager of the K-12 Institute of the Education Commission of the States. “Deeper learning is an umbrella term defining the skills and knowledge students need to attain success in college, career and citizenship. Students that possess deeper learning skills: 1. Master core academic content. 2. Think critically and solve complex problems. 3. Work collaboratively. 4. Communicate effectively. 5. Learn how to learn. 6. Develop academic mindsets.”

Students who study the arts are consistently higher academic achievers than students who do not study the arts, according to Kathryn Vaughn and Ellen Winner in the Journal of Aesthetic Education, 34(3/4), 77-89.  In addition, the more art classes a student takes, the higher their SAT scores.  Students who take four years of arts and music classes average almost 100 points better on their SAT scores than students who take only one-half year or less. (The College Board. (2011). College-Bound Seniors: Total Group Profile Report.)

Renaissance School emphasizes both broad and deep interdisciplinary learning through a balanced program equally strong in the arts and academics.  Renaissance School graduates have been accepted to over a dozen prestigious arts programs (Rhode Island School of Design, School of Visual Arts (NYC), and Berklee College of Music) as well as institutions known for their high academic standards (Brown, Johns Hopkins, UVA).


Founded in 1999, Renaissance School is a college preparatory high school for high ability students in grades 9-12 located on Charlottesville’s historic Court Square.  Additional information is available at or by calling 434-984-1952.