15 Biggest High Schools in Houston, TX [2023]

Houston, often referred to as the “Bayou City,” is the most populous city in Texas and the fourth-largest city in the United States. Known for its vibrant culture, diverse population, and thriving industries, Houston offers a multitude of opportunities for its residents, including high-quality education.

High schools play a vital role in shaping the future of students, and in a city as diverse as Houston, TX, there are numerous educational institutions to choose from.

The biggest high schools in Houston, Texas, include Bellaire High School with an enrollment of 3,320 students, MacArthur Senior High School with an enrollment of 2,826 students, and Heights High School with an enrollment of 2,377 students.

When it comes to high schools, size can be a significant factor in determining the overall experience and resources available to students. Larger schools often offer a wide range of academic programs, extracurricular activities, and support services. In Houston, where the population continues to grow, there are several high schools that stand out for their impressive size and scope.

In this article, we will explore the 12 biggest high schools in Houston, discussing their size, programs, and contributions to the community. From bustling campuses to comprehensive curricula, these schools offer unique opportunities for students to learn and grow.

15 Biggest High Schools in Houston, TX

Now let’s explore some of the biggest high schools in Houston that have made a significant impact on the local educational landscape. These schools have demonstrated excellence in academics, extracurricular activities, and the overall development of their students. Here are ten notable high schools in Houston:

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1. MacArthur Senior High School

  • Address: 4400 Aldine Mail Rte Rd, Houston, TX 77039, United States
  • Principal: Heather Peterson
  • Founded: 1965
  • Enrollment: 2,826 (2018-19)
  • Colors: White, Red, Silver
  • Phone: +1 281-985-6330

2. Carnegie Vanguard High School

  • Address: 1501 Taft St, Houston, TX 77019, United States
  • Founded: 2002
  • Number of students: 854 (2020–2021)
  • Colors: White, Blue, Red
  • School types: State school, Magnet school
  • Mascot: Rhino
  • Phone: +1 713-732-3690

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3. Challenge Early College High School

  • Located in: Houston Community College – West Loop Campus
  • Address: 5601 W Loop S, Houston, TX 77081, United States
  • Founded: 2003
  • Phone: +1 713-664-9712
  • District: Houston Independent School District

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4. North Houston Early College High School

  • Address: 8001 Fulton St bldg c, Houston, TX 77022, United States
  • Phone: +1 713-696-6168
  • District: Houston Independent School District

5. East Early College High School

  • Address: 220 N Milby St, Houston, TX 77003, United States
  • Number of students: 485 (2017–2018)
  • Principal: Stephanie Torrez Square
  • Phone: +1 713-847-4809
  • District: Houston Independent School District

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6. Mickey Leland College Preparatory Academy for Young Men

  • Address: 1700 Gregg St, Houston, TX 77020, United States
  • Phone: +1 713-226-2668
  • Founded: 2011

7. Michael E. DeBakey High School for Health Professions

  • Address: 2545 Pressler St, Houston, TX 77030, United States
  • Number of students: 890 (2017–2018)
  • Founded: 1972
  • Mascot: Viper
  • School types: State school, Public school
  • Phone: +1 713-741-2410
  • Enrollment: 890 (2017-18)
  • District: Houston Independent School District

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8. Northside High School

  • Address: 1101 Quitman St, Houston, TX 77009, United States
  • Number of students: 1,550 (2017–2018)
  • Phone: +1 713-226-4900
  • Mascot: Panther
  • District: Houston Independent School District
  • Feeder schools: Gregory-Lincoln Education Center (K-8); Travis Elementary School; Others listed below
  • Student to teacher ratio: 15.98
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9. Bellaire High School

  • Address: 5100 Maple St, Bellaire, TX 77401, United States
  • Principal: Michael Niggli
  • Yearbook: Carillon
  • Founded: 1955
  • Enrollment: 3,320 (2018-19)
  • Colors: White, Red
  • Mascot: Cardinal
  • Phone: +1 713-295-3704

10. Eastwood Academy High School

  • Address: 1315 Dumble St, Houston, TX 77023, United States
  • Number of students: 427 (2017–2018)
  • Founded: 1999
  • Mascot: Boxer
  • Principal: Brandi Lira
  • Phone: +1 713-924-1697
  • District: Houston Independent School District
  • Motto: Where it’s cool to be smart!

11. Heights High School

  • Address: 413 E 13th St, Houston, TX 77008, United States
  • Number of students: 2,377 (2018–2019)
  • Founded: 1926
  • Color: Maroon
  • Mascot: Bulldog
  • Phone: +1 713-865-4400
  • School type: State school
  • District: Houston Independent School District

12. St. Thomas High School

  • Address: 4500 Memorial Dr, Houston, TX 77007, United States
  • Founded: 1900
  • Colors: White, Red
  • School types: Secondary school, Private school, Co-education, Single-sex education
  • Affiliation: Congregation of St. Basil
  • Motto: “Teach me Goodness, Discipline, and Knowledge”
  • Mascot: Tom Eagle
  • Phone: +1 713-864-6348
  • Website: org

13. The Tenney School

  • Address: 3500 S Gessner Rd, Houston, TX 77063, United States
  • Founded: 1973
  • Phone: +1 713-783-6990
  • Website: com

14. St. Pius X High School

  • Address: 811 W Donovan St, Houston, TX 77091, United States
  • Number of students: 638 (2017–2018)
  • Founded: 1956
  • Colors: Black, White, Grey, Orange
  • Accreditations: Cognia, Texas Catholic Conference
  • Phone: +1 713-692-3581
  • Mascot: Beppo the Panther
  • Motto: “Veritas” (“Truth”)
  • Parent organization: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

15. Scarborough High School

  • Address: 4141 Costa Rica Rd, Houston, TX 77092, United States
  • Number of students: 780 (2017–2018)
  • Founded: 1968
  • Colors: White, Orange
  • Phone: +1 713-613-2200
  • District: Houston Independent School District
  • Motto: “Success is about attitude and expectations every day!”
  • School type: State school
  • Lowest grade: Ninth Grade

Factors for Ranking High Schools

When evaluating and ranking high schools, several factors are taken into consideration to determine their overall quality and effectiveness. Some of the key factors include:

Academic Performance

Academic performance is a fundamental aspect of any high school. Factors such as graduation rates, standardized test scores, college acceptance rates, and the availability of advanced placement (AP) courses play a significant role in determining a school’s academic excellence. High schools that consistently demonstrate outstanding academic achievements are highly regarded within the community.

Extracurricular Activities

Extracurricular activities complement the academic curriculum and provide students with opportunities to explore their interests and passions outside the classroom. High schools that offer a wide array of extracurricular programs, including sports, clubs, arts, and community service, foster a well-rounded educational experience. These activities encourage students to develop leadership skills, teamwork, and a sense of community engagement.

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Facilities and Resources

The availability of state-of-the-art facilities and resources is crucial for creating an optimal learning environment. High schools that invest in modern technology, well-equipped laboratories, libraries, and other resources enhance the educational experience and facilitate student learning. Adequate infrastructure, including classrooms, sports facilities, and performing arts spaces, also contributes to a well-rounded educational institution.

Diversity and Inclusion

Diversity and inclusion are vital aspects of a high school’s environment. Schools that foster an inclusive culture and celebrate diversity create a welcoming atmosphere for students from various backgrounds. The presence of diverse student populations promotes cultural understanding, empathy, and prepares students to thrive in a multicultural society.

Comparison of the 12 High Schools

While each of the 12 high schools in Houston, TX, has its own unique features and strengths, a comparison can help prospective students and their families make informed decisions. Factors to consider may include academic offerings, extracurricular activities, student support services, and college acceptance rates.

Benefits and Challenges of Large High Schools

Large high schools offer numerous benefits, such as a diverse student body, extensive extracurricular opportunities, and a wide range of academic programs. However, they may also present challenges, including increased competition for resources and potential for students to feel overwhelmed. It is important for students to find the right balance and seek support when needed.

How can I decide which high school is the best fit for my child in Houston, TX?

When selecting a high school, it’s important to consider your child’s interests, academic goals, and learning style. Research each school’s programs, extracurricular activities, and support services to find the best fit.

Do these high schools have advanced placement programs?

Yes, many of the 12 biggest high schools in Houston, TX, offer Advanced Placement (AP) programs. These programs provide students with an opportunity to earn college credits while in high school.

Are there any specialized programs for students interested in STEM fields?

Yes, several of the high schools mentioned in this article offer specialized STEM programs, focusing on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics education.

What are some of the benefits of attending a large high school?

Large high schools often provide a diverse student body, extensive extracurricular opportunities, and a wide range of academic programs. They also tend to have more resources and facilities available for students.

How can students manage the potential challenges of attending a large high school?

To manage the challenges of a large high school, students can seek support from teachers, counselors, and mentors. It’s important to establish a support network, prioritize time management, and participate in activities that align with personal interests and goals.


In conclusion, the 12 biggest high schools in Houston, TX, provide students with an array of opportunities to learn, grow, and pursue their passions. Whether it’s excelling in academics, sports, arts, or community service, these schools offer a platform for students to thrive. Prospective students should carefully consider their own interests and goals when choosing a high school that aligns with their aspirations.

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