Points of Pride
Palm Beach County invests in a key asset: education. We know that our diverse and multi-lingual workforce – both present and future – are the vital support required by industries seeking to connect to global populations and business environments. We invest in our students’ college preparedness, workforce readiness, in curriculum alignment, quality, and diversity of choice. Here is a sample of the numerous points of pride we can take in Palm Beach County…
Private & Faith-Based Schools
For over 50 years, The Benjamin School is the only PK3-12 non-sectarian independent day school in Palm Beach County. Graduates achieve 100% college acceptance and matriculate to some of the nation's most prestigious universities.
- The King’s Academy is Palm Beach County’s leading Christian college-prep PK-12 school with graduates going on to success in a variety of colleges and universities: Christian and secular; Ivy league and state universities; U.S. Military Academies and beyond.
- Oxbridge Academy is a co-ed independent college preparatory school for grades 9-12 founded in 2011 by philanthropist William I. Koch. The school and curriculum are designed to help students realize their full potential in the classroom, on the athletic fields, in the community and in life. Oxbridge Academy’s teachers and staff form close bonds with the students, and the school provides extensive and individualized College Counseling under the direction of David Prutow. The first graduating class (2014) to date includes admittances to Cornell, the U.S. Naval Academy, Clemson, and other top schools.
- Palm Beach Day Academy is a PK2-9 independent, co-educational, non-sectarian day school that was founded in 1921 and is the oldest independent day school in Florida. 98% of its graduates are admitted to their first-choice secondary schools, including the top boarding, local independent and public magnet programs. Over the last five years, 83% of alumni attend colleges ranked “Very Competitive” or higher, and 39% attended the “Most Competitive” colleges, according to Barron’s Guide to the Most Competitive Colleges.
- American Heritage is ranked as #1 high school in the state of Florida with 101 nationally recognized scholars, #12 out of 22,000 high schools in the U.S. for National Merit Scholars and $67 million in college scholarships were offered to the Class of 2014.
- Saint Andrew’s School is the only JK-12 independent school in Palm Beach County to offer the choice of Honors, Advanced Placement, and International Baccalaureate courses in preparation for college. Academically, over 75% of the Classes of 2011, 2012, and 2013 were accepted at a college rated either Most Competitive or Highly Competitive by Barron’s Profiles of American Colleges.
- According to Saint Andrew's School, their enrollment numbers for 2014 and 2015, and for our 267 newly enrolled day families (not including boarding), 30% relocated from outside Florida to move to the area and attend Saint Andrew's School:
- 53% of these families came from the Northeast
- 22% of these families came from outside the United States (excluding South America)
- 14% of these families came from states outside the Northeast
- 11% of these families came from South America
Three Palm Beach County public high schools ranked in the Top 100 nationwide on a list released by The Washington Post showing the most challenging high schools in the nation. The schools include: Suncoast High School, Boca Raton High School, and Alexander W. Dreyfoos School of the Arts. (2014)
- The 10,000 Palm Beach County public school graduates in 2012 garnered nearly $94 million dollars in scholarships.
- The students were accepted to a wide range of colleges and universities to include local, state, Ivy League, international, arts, historically black institutions, military, and numerous others.
- Over 92% of our high school graduates pursue college and other post-graduate education.
- Education Week recognized the SDPBC as having the second-highest graduation rates in the state, exceeding the state average, and the eighth-best in the nation. Newsweek and U.S. News Magazine ranked two of our public high schools in Top 10 in the state, and The Washington Post ranked those same two in the Top 100 in the nation (2013).
- Suncoast Community High School had a 100% graduation rate in 2012, and those students were awarded over $9.4 million in scholarships. Suncoast is a Magnet School with four rigorous programs in Computer Science, International Baccalaureate, Innovative Interactive Technology, and Math, Science and Engineering.
- Suncoast High School is ranked #72 in the nation and #8 in the State of Florida by U.S. News and World Report. Suncoast High School is ranked #8 in the nation and #2 in the State of Florida by the Washington Post's "Most Challenging Schools" Report.
Colleges & Universities
- Florida Atlantic University is serving a record-high student body of 30,000 undergraduate and graduate students, offering more than 180 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in fields that span the arts and humanities, the sciences, medicine, nursing, accounting, business, education, public administration, social work, architecture, engineering, computer science, and more.
- Keiser University’s mission is to provide career-focused education and prepare graduates for employment as determined by business and industry leaders, and our “students first” philosophy.
- Lynn University’s award-winning, tablet-based learning initiative puts a transformational learning device into the hands of its students. Lynn University is recognized by Apple as a distinguished school for innovation, leadership, and educational excellence
- Northwood University is a full-service Business university with the mission of preparing the future leaders of a global, free-enterprise society, and the core purpose of developing leaders, managers, and entrepreneurs with the skills and character to drive personal, organizational and societal success. Northwood prepares students from approximately 27 states and 46 countries to be leaders in global commerce by complementing classroom instruction with a variety of hands-on learning opportunities, internships, and study abroad options.
- Palm Beach Atlantic University serves nearly 3,800 undergraduate, graduate and online students from campus locations in West Palm Beach, Wellington and Orlando. The University offers 48 undergraduate majors, five graduate degree programs and two professional degrees – Nursing Practice and Pharmacy.
- U.S. News & World Report ranks Palm Beach Atlantic University 51st among the best universities in the South and 25th nationally for online bachelor’s degree programs.
- Palm Beach State College offers tuition-free dual enrollment and early admission to college-ready high school students as well as comprehensive college preparatory courses to equip individuals to pursue higher learning. The College and the School District of Palm Beach County have joined forces to create a comprehensive, cooperative approach to college readiness. PBSC ranked on the list of the Top 150 community colleges in the nation by The Aspen Institute.
- Nova Southeastern University (NSU) is an accredited private, not-for-profit, research university offering a diverse array of innovative programs at the bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral and professional level. With more than 25,000 students and 160,000 alumni, NSU is the 9th largest private not for profit university in the United States.
Private & Faith-Based Schools
- The Benjamin School offers 15 years of Mandarin Chinese, in addition to Spanish and French. It has state-of-the-art science laboratories and world language laboratories. Its school-wide Science Technology Engineering Math (STEM) program begins with its three-year-old students and continues throughout 15 years of dynamic and project-based learning.
- The Benjamin School has the most favorable student/teacher ratio in a PK3-12 full program in the state of Florida, helping shape its graduates to become leaders in government, medicine, technology, and the arts across the nation and abroad. Benjamin alumni include a United States Congressman, an Academy Award winner, an Emmy Award winner, published authors, decorated veterans, an NFL athlete, and an Olympian.
- Alumni of The King’s Academy impact their world in business, medicine, the arts, law, public service, missions, athletics, and so much more. Across the country and across the world, TKA graduates are leading others from a Christian perspective whether performing on Broadway or with Yanni, broadcasting on The NFL Network or Focus on the Family, managing companies large or small, teaching students in kindergarten or college, and preaching in the pulpits of America or the streets of India and Brazil.
- Oxbridge Academy students work independently and collaboratively, just like in the real world, to develop critical thinking, teamwork, perseverance, and responsibility.
- Palm Beach Day Academy’s two-teachers-per-class model in the Lower Campus and small class sizes throughout allow a sincerely dedicated faculty to provide critical levels of individual attention that allow them to refine their thinking, their writing and their self-expression to the highest levels. 81% of faculty have graduate degrees and the faculty to student ratio is 6:1. It offers an International Studies Program that provides an opportunity to develop the four Global Competencies and to increase awareness and knowledge of diverse countries, peoples, and cultures throughout the world. A China Partnership Program, including an annual trip to China, helps students realize that we are all citizens of a global world. A world languages program includes Spanish, Mandarin and French.
- Palm Beach Day Academy’s graduates, with names like Roosevelt, Kennedy, Vanderbilt, Astor and Hutton, rank among the most accomplished lawmakers, artists, entrepreneurs, scientists, poets and playwrights of the American cultural landscape.
- Saint Andrew's School students engage in several entrepreneurial and business activities on campus, in the local community, and as part of national programs such as Junior Achievement, Boca Raton Chamber Young Entrepreneurs Academy, and the Foundation for Teaching Economics.
- For 90 years, Rosarian Academy has been dedicated to providing its students with the foundation to live life filled with faith, knowledge and service. Serving those in need is an integral part of life for Rosarian Academy students. Through service opportunities which occur throughout the school year, students realize that their own well-being is strengthened by service to others and the wider community.
- Our public school district recognizes the importance of teaching a variety of languages, including Chinese, French, Italian, Latin, Spanish, Haitian Creole, and American Sign Language.
- The School District of Palm Beach County is proud of its 1200 business partnerships. Partnerships encompass a wide variety of industries including Banking, Biotech, Utilities, Engineering, Information Technology, Retail, Medical, Communication, Hospitality, Construction, and numerous others.
- The business partnerships provide more than $4,000,000 in support to our schools annually.
- Our public school district is privileged to have great community support from 38,256 community volunteers proudly and effectively serving our students and schools.
- Community volunteers provide the district with more than 1,000,000 hours annually.
Colleges & Universities
- Florida Atlantic University’s College of Business, with more than 8,600 students, features the Adams Center for Entrepreneurship, which prepares students in business, science, engineering, and other disciplines to become entrepreneurs through business ownership. The Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, opened in Fall 2011, has established relationships with several prominent area hospitals that are serving as sites for clerkships, hospital-based electives, and residencies.
- FAU is recognized as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance/Cyber Defense Research (CAE-R) for academic years 2014-2019. The Center for Cryptology and Information Security (CCIS) is dedicated to original, cutting-edge research in cryptology and information security.
- Sixty-two percent of Keiser University students graduate in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) and healthcare fields, providing the talented workforce necessary for Florida to compete globally. According to Community College Week Magazine (June 2012) Keiser University is second in the nation and first in Florida in production of associate degree graduates in health professions and related programs.
- With an approximate 90% placement ratio, Northwood University has proven success in developing business leaders, managers, and entrepreneurs.
- Within six months of graduation, 64 percent of Palm Beach Atlantic University’s recent graduates were employed full-time, and 50% of them are working in Palm Beach County with an additional 12 percent employed in South Florida and an additional 18percent living and working in the state.
- Palm Beach Atlantic University Gregory School of Pharmacy class of 2014 graduates scored higher than the state and national averages on the 2014 North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination (NAPLEX) (95.83% among first-time test takers). Additionally, the graduates scored higher than the state and national averages on the 2014 Multistate Pharmacy Jurisprudence Examination (MPJE) (95.24% among first-time test takers).
- In 2014, Palm Beach Atlantic University graduates scored a 90 percent average pass-rate on the National Council Licensure Examinations for Registered Nurses, which is eight percentage points higher than the national average.
- Palm Beach State College recently received a $3 million U.S. Department of Labor grant to enhance and expand its health information technology programs, was selected by the state of Florida to create and implement the statewide career pathway system for early care and education professionals, and is one of 12 Florida colleges awarded a total of $15 million in federal funds to improve education and training in advanced manufacturing.
- Nova Southeastern University (NSU) provides convenient modes of learning for working professionals through regional campuses such as its Palm Beach location that enable students to complete their degrees successfully while providing an experience that contributes to their personal and professional development. Nova Southeastern University (NSU) offers advanced degrees in high-demand fields including medicine, law, education, nursing, business and computer science.
Private & Faith-Based Schools
- The Benjamin School has 23 Advanced Placement offerings with students achieving the highest scores in Florida and scores rivaling those of any school in the nation. It offers a cumulative and age-appropriate character education program PK3-12 based upon The Benjamin School Honor Code and the vital importance of community service.
- The King’s Academy Elementary School recently was nominated by the Council for American Private Education (CAPE) for the US Department of Education’s “Blue Ribbon School” award, recognizing Exemplary High Performing Schools based on assessments in both reading and mathematics or high-level scoring on tests referenced by national norms. It offers a rigorous PK-12 academic program guided by expert Christian teachers who encourage students to wrestle with complex and timeless questions. Its core curriculum provides every student with a strong foundation in English, math, science, history, and foreign languages. Each discipline brings faith to bear upon learning and allows students to evaluate and assimilate new information in the context of a Biblical worldview.
- Evidence-based best practices inform Oxbridge Academy’s decisions, from the amount of homework to the format of textbooks, and combines the arts with its curriculum. In addition to traditional arts classes and programs, students can unleash creative energy through the arts in History class, develop an eye through photography in English class, and build a guitar in Physics.
- Oxbridge Academy teachers design their own curricula and tailor lessons to students’ needs and interests. They focus on depth of learning and do not teach to a test. Oxbridge Academy has high standards but does not standardize education.
At Palm Beach Day Academy challenging academics are balanced by a nurturing, compassion-rich environment. From its globally focused curriculum to its professional development for teachers to its proactive relationships with alumni, board and community, Palm Beach Day Academy has become a world-class institution, not only competing with the best schools throughout the country, but setting a standard of educational excellence for over 90 years.
Palm Beach Day Academy is the only co-educational PS-8/9 school enrolling 400 + students in Florida that is a member of the invitation-only INDEX Group. This group of the top independent schools shares data, analysis, research, and information that guides decision-making, strategic planning, and provides insight into a national perspective on emerging trends and best practices. Project Zero is an educational research group at Harvard University that studies the nature of intelligence, thinking, and creativity, and 33 Palm Beach Day Academy teachers have attended intensive training at Harvard in their methodologies and participate in Study Groups with their colleagues. This serves as the foundation for the school's extensive program that develops critical thinking in its students.
- Saint Andrew's School offers close to 100 Honors, Advanced Placement, and International Baccalaureate courses as part of its JK-12 curriculum. The academic experience of Saint Andrew’s includes an Honor Code, which represents the highest ideals of moral development, integrity, and achievement, as well as respect for the ideas, work and property of others.
- Rosarian Academy follows the nationally ranked Core Knowledge Curriculum which provides a guide to coherent content and skill development from grade to grade, designed to ensure steady academic articulation as students build their knowledge and skills from one year to the next. Local field trips, national travel, guest visits, and community service extend Rosarian Academy students’ education beyond the classroom.
- Classical Christian Academy of the Palm Beaches is the only Classical christian school in Palm Beach County and one of about 230 classical Christian schools in the country.
- Our public school district is a national leader in the quality and diversity of its Career Academies and Choice Programs, with 237 award-winning programs.
- The School District of Palm Beach County has one of the nation’s most-recognized and extensive Advances Studies programs including Advanced Placement (AP); International Baccalaureate (IB); middle school Pre-IB; Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM); and Cambridge University’s Advanced International Certificate of Education (AICE). We also have Gifted Programs and Art Programs in all school levels.
- In Palm Beach County, Choice programs allow students to attend the public school offering the college/ career focus academy of their choosing, creating lifelong learners with strong foundational skills.
Colleges & Universities
- Florida Atlantic University is developing academic programming and research initiatives that align with its three signature themes – Marine and Coastal Issues, Biotechnology, and Contemporary Societal Challenges. FAU is home to the Southeast National Marine Renewable Energy Center, a federally funded research facility that is developing technology to generate energy by harnessing the power of Florida’s ocean currents. It's Executive MBA program was recognized in Bloomberg Businessweek's Best Business Schools of 2013 report.
- Keiser University’s degrees include the fields of allied health, nursing, information technology, criminal justice, fire science, homeland security, education, legal studies and culinary arts. Graduate degrees include business administration, education, physician’s assistant, the Ph.D. in educational leadership and the doctoral degree in business administration, among others.
- Lynn University’s nationally praised Dialogues of Learning curriculum and international student base help Lynn graduates gain the intellectual flexibility and global experience to fulfill their potential in an ever-changing world.
- Northwood University’s business-related majors include Business Management; International Business; Sustainability Management; Entertainment, Sport, and Promotion Management; Entrepreneurship, and more. Thus, the university is tailored to assist Palm Beach County business and industry in a variety of management areas by offering traditional undergraduate (BBA), adult degree completion (BBA), and graduate business programs (MBA) in full-time, part-time, and weekend formats, as well an online.
- The University’s Rinker School of Business prepares an annual enrollment of more than 400 undergraduate and M. B. A. students for careers in Accounting, Finance, International Business, Management and Marketing.
The five largest undergraduate majors at Palm Beach Atlantic are biology, psychology, management, medicinal and biological chemistry and nursing.
- More than 3,300 students earn Associate in Arts degrees at Palm Beach State College annually, preparing them for transfer to upper division work at a state university or other institution; these AA graduates perform at the same or higher levels than students who begin their studies at a university. Palm Beach State College and the School District of Palm Beach County have established 42 specific credit pathways to expedite advancement from high school career academies to the corresponding college-level programs.
- Nova Southeastern University (NSU) pioneered distance education and is at the forefront research in cyber security, post-traumatic stress disorder, cancer therapies, stem cell treatment, immunology, and coral reef restoration, which contributed to the High Research Activity designation by Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. Nova Southeastern University (NSU) is 1 of only 37 higher educational institutions nationwide to earn designations for both High Research Activity and Community Engagement from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.
Private & Faith-Based Schools
- The Benjamin School has an unparalleled co-curricular program including visual arts, early music instruction, band, strings, theater, leadership opportunities in student government, school ambassador program, intramural sports, and extracurricular activities in the Lower School; over fifty clubs and organizations in the Middle and Upper School promoting myriad leadership opportunities.
- The Benjamin School awards over 2 million dollars in financial aid annually to students with documented financial need. It strives to achieve its mission by admitting and retaining the best and brightest students who represent and reflect the diverse localand global communities.
- The King’s Academy provides traditional Christian education with a broad variety of Academic, Fine Arts, Athletic, and Co-Curricular offerings. Students from across the county - and across the world in TKA’s International Program – come together to experience rich learning and a nurturing environment regardless of background.
- Regardless of their economic background, Oxbridge Academy students have access to the best teachers and technology to learn the skills they need to be tomorrow’s leaders and innovators. Oxbridge Academy is a place where students fall in love with learning, adn it meets 100% of a student’s documented financial need. Its “need blind” admissions process evaluates prospective students on merit, not on how much tuition a family can afford.
Palm Beach Day Academy is committed to enrolling a talented and diverse student body and awards approximately 1.2 million dollars in need-based financial aid each year.
- As a day and boarding college preparatory school in the Episcopal tradition, Saint Andrew's School welcomes students from 25 different countries of all faiths, customs, cultures, and beliefs. Saint Andrew’s School allocated more than $2.7 million dollars in need-based financial aid in 2013.
- Rosarian offers a full-range of clubs and extra-curricular activities for students of all ages, including: student government, scouting groups, show choir, computer programming, strings, golf, tennis, Zumba Kids, Mind Lab, and Karate. Founded in 1925 by the Adrian Dominican Sisters, Rosarian Academy is the only independent Catholic school in Palm Beach County.
- The School District of Palm Beach County is comprised of 185 schools, serving 176,724 (Total K-12) students who speak 150 languages/dialects.
- The District has continually improved its graduation rate to 79.8% and has closed the gap between white and minority students in both graduation rate and academic performance.
- Palm Beach County ranks among the "best" in the state and nation in return on investment (ROI) as found in a national 2011 study by the Center for American Progress, for its high student achievement and low cost.
- We offer 16 International Baccalaureate Choice Programs; 19 in Aerospace, Engineering, and STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math); 8 in Biotechnology and Environmental; 10 Business, Finance, International Business, and Marketing; 19 Choice Programs in Culinary; 11 in Information Technology; 25 in Medical; 9 Performing Arts Choice Programs; 12 in ROTC; 15 in Teacher and Early Childhood Education; 3 in Veterinarian Sciences; 3 in Hospitality and Tourism; 4 Construction programs; 1 in Biomedical, Engineering, Animation, and Robotics; 5 Advanced International Certificates of Education (AICE) Programs from University of Cambridge; other Choice academies include but are not limited to: Pre-Law, Fashion Design, International Spanish, Auto Collision and Mechanics, and Sports Management.
- Over 8,000 public school students earned Industry Certifications between 2011 and 2012.
Colleges & Universities
- With 50% of its student body classified as minority or international students, Florida Atlantic University ranks as the most racially, ethnically, and culturally diverse institution in Florida’s State University System. Students come from all 50 states, every county in Florida, and more than 180 countries. Enrichment opportunities include internships, hands-on research, study abroad experiences, and 310 clubs and campus organizations.
- Keiser University is a private, not-for-profit university serving nearly 18,000 students pursuing doctoral through associate degrees on 15 campuses, internationally and online, Keiser University employs over 3,500—mostly Floridians. It is the second largest of Florida’s Independent Colleges and Universities (ICUF) and serves the second most Florida resident students. Keiser University's educational reach extends globally through its international programs, including the Latin Division, a cooperative agreement in the Eastern European nation of Moldova, and a campus in Shanghai, China.
- With more than 2,000 students from 90 countries and 45 states and territories, Lynn University is consistently ranked among the top five most international schools by U.S. News and World Report’s “America’s Best Colleges.
- Northwood University Florida’s student body consists of almost 40% international students and represents a broad diversity among its domestic students. The largest countries of origin of its international students include: China, the United Kingdom, Sweden, Canada, Germany, and the Bahamas.
- Palm Beach Atlantic University is an interdenominational Christian university with a student body representing 17 Christian denominations.
Palm Beach Atlantic University educates students from 40 states and 40 countries. High-school and home-schooled students can earn college credits through Palm Beach Atlantic University’s Dual Enrollment Program.
With 41 percent of its student body classified as minority or international students, Palm Beach Atlantic University reflects a diverse learning community.
- Palm Beach State College is the largest institution of higher education in Palm Beach County, serving 49,000 students annually with more than 100 programs of study, including bachelor’s and associate degrees, college credit and workforce training certificates, Honors College and continuing education. PBSC has the 9th-lowest tuition in the nation among public institutions offering 4-year or higher degrees, according to the U.S. Department of Education’s College Affordability and Transparency Center.
- NSU awards more doctoral research degrees to African American and Hispanic students than any other public or private, not-for-profit university in the country. Research advancements by Nova Southeastern University (NSU) are supported by more than 90 agencies and the local, regional, state and national levels. This has led to such developments as NSU’s recently opened Center of Excellence for Coral Reef Ecosystems Research and a Center for Collaborative Research that is currently under construction.
Palm Beach County’s Graduation Rate Outperforms State and Large Urban Districts
- The School District of Palm Beach County has the highest graduation rate of all large urban school districts in Florida, and was the only large district to raise its graduation rate in 2014.
- Palm Beach County continues to outperform the state for the fifth consecutive year, with 77.9% of all students in the county’s District-operated and charter schools earning diplomas in 2014, an improvement of 3.6% points since the 2010-11 school year.
- Excluding charters, the number of students earning a diploma from a District-operated high school rose by 2.7% points in 2014, with 84.3% of students graduating.
- The District also boosted its graduation rates among Hispanic and Black students in 2014.
Most Palm Beach County High Schools Earn A’s and B’s from State
- 80% of Palm Beach County’s District-operated and charter high schools earned A and B grades from the Florida Department of Education – an increase of 18% points from 2013, despite tougher requirements for schools to earn top grades.
- Palm Beach County outperformed the state in the number of A and B-rated high schools.
- Throughout Florida, 71.1% of high schools earned A’s and B’s compared with 80% in Palm Beach County.
- While we recognize we have more work to do, we are making progress and moving in the right direction as a system.
- We are committed to ensuring that every student that walks through our school gates also walks across the graduation stage prepared for life, career, and college.