Public/Private/Charter Schools

Educating students for more than 150 years, the Tucson Unified School District is the largest school system in Southern Arizona. The district offers a well-rounded education to its elementary, middle and high school students, creating an environment that nurtures each child socially, intellectually and, of course, academically.

Early childhood education sets the tone for a child’s overall learning experience, and at the district, all elementary and kindergarten through eighth grade schools offer full-day kindergarten instruction.

With a mission to prepare its students for far-reaching success in the workplace and higher educational pursuits, the district’s career and technical education classes help scholars obtain the skills they need for the 21st century. CTE courses include agribusiness, automotive, business, communications, construction technology, culinary, engineering, health sciences and human services.

Aside from these rigorous academics, students have the opportunity to participate in athletics, fine arts, foreign languages, interscholastic competitions and science, technology and math courses.

As a whole, Pima County is home to more than 10 school districts, committed to educating the next generation of employees, business owners and citizens.

Funded by the state and free to all Arizona students, public charter schools are another option for students and families. Charter schools give academic choices to families. There are more than 100 charter schools in Pima County to serve pupils.

For a faith-based education, many parents opt for a private school format for their children. With nearly 100 private schools located within the county, they certainly have their pick. While not all of these organizations are religiously based, the majority focuses on Christian or Roman Catholic doctrines.

Bright scholars that want to get a jump-start on their college education or career can make the choice to attend the Pima County Joint Technical Education District. This public high school boasts tuition-free CTE programs for 10th graders through age 22.

Pima County Joint Technical Education District is all inclusive, allowing public, private, charter and home-school students to attend. Those working toward a GED can also participate.

Higher Learning

The University of Arizona, a tier-one research institution, enjoys an enrollment of more than 43,600 students, including undergraduate, graduate and first professional. Offering bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral, specialist and first professional degrees in myriad areas of study and research, the university positions its students for high achievement.

The university spans more than 20 colleges, ranging in fields of study, such as medicine, engineering, nursing and pharmacy. As one of the top research institutions in the nation, the University of Arizona shines on an international stage too. The university ranked No. 52 out of 18,000 worldwide by the Center for World Rankings. On top of that, in Forbes’ annual “America’s Best Value Colleges,” the university ranked No. 108 out of 300 colleges and universities and No. 59 among public institutions as well as No. 69 among research institutions.

Pima Community College, a two-year, open-access institution, with six campuses and six learning centers located throughout the metro area serves more than 43,000 student body. Pima Community College is committed to offering an affordable, quality education to all students.

The college offers certificates and associate degrees in a wide array of concentrations. These include numerous transfer programs, which allow students to earn an associate, then move on to a four-year institution to earn a bachelor’s degree. Moreover, the college provides adult basic education, career and technical training programs, continuing education, and workforce development options to the community. The college’s Centers of Excellence for Applied Technology at the Downtown Campus and Dental Studies at the West Campus provide students with state-of-the-art training. The college works with business and industry leaders to craft curriculum that prepares students for jobs with global and 21st-century skills.

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s Davis-Monthan campus helps active duty soldiers, veterans and civilians earn their college degree. Students can pursue associate, bachelor’s or master’s degrees. Undergraduate certifications are also available.

Those living or working in the area also have Arizona State University, Carrington College, Park University, Pima Medical Institute and Wayland Baptist University for higher education endeavors. p By Sarah Lancaster

School districts

Amphitheater Unified

Ajo Unified

Catalina Foothills Unified

Flowing Wells Unified

Marana Unified

Pima County JTED

Sahuarita Unified

Sunnyside Unified

Tanque Verde Unified

Tucson Unified

Vail Unified