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Get to know all the public and private school options in Gainesville and Hall County
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Gainesville Middle School students make their way between classes Friday, Feb. 5, 2021, while observing social distancing and wearing masks. - photo by Scott Rogers

Much of Hall County is served by the public Hall County school system, while the city of Gainesville has its own system. The Buford system is another public city system on the county's southern border. Several private options also exist, the largest of those being Lakeview and Lanier Christian academies. Learn more about each of the schools and their unique offerings below.

Public schools

Hall County Schools

The county school system includes seven traditional high schools, eight middle schools and several elementary schools. Many of these schools have specialty programs like STEM academies and international baccalaureate programs or specific focuses on arts or world languages. In many cases, families can apply to attend a Hall school outside their district, though in most cases they must provide their own transportation.  A new virtual school is also available for third through 12th graders who qualify. The upper grade levels also offer these specialty schools: 

Lanier College & Career Academy: This unique school offers various pathways to help meet the needs of local businesses, such as trades, hospitality and personal care services. Students can earn professional certifications and industry credentials as they run their own businesses open to the public, such as a bistro and graphic design.

Howard E. Ivester Early College:  A dual enrollment campus that puts college professors in the classroom with high school students, who can earn a high school diploma at the same time as college credits. Open to qualified juniors and seniors and some sophomores.

The Foundry: This nontraditional school focuses on character development and a curriculum that helps students learn to be successful.

2021-22 school year: Aug. 6-May 24

More info:

Gainesville City Schools

The Gainesville system includes six elementary schools, a middle school and a high school serving residents within the city limits. Those residing outside the city limits can apply for enrollment at an annual tuition rate of $800 for the first student and $700 for each additional student. Parents can choose an elementary school within their district cluster. One cluster includes Centennial, Enota, Fair Street and New Holland elementary schools. The second cluster includes Gainesville and Mundy Mill. A second middle school campus is under construction, set to open in August 2022.

2021-22 school year: Begins Aug. 13, except for pre-K through 2nd, 6th, 9th and 10th grades, which begin Aug. 11. Ends May 20.

More info:

Buford City Schools

The Buford system touches the southern border of Hall County at the Gwinnett County line. Those living outside the city limits can also apply for enrollment in this city system.

2021-22 school year: Aug. 4-May 26

More info:

Mountain Education Charter High School

This public school with a site in Hall County offers evening, self-paced courses leading to a high school diploma. Courses can be completed on a part-time basis and transferred to another public high school. Learn more at

Private schools

Lakeview Academy:  This private school in Gainesville serves students preschool all the way to 12th grades. It’s an independent college-preparatory school with a rigorous curriculum and many extracurricular options including sports at the GHSA level. Learn more at

Lanier Christian Academy: In South Hall, this K-12 private school provides a setting centered on faith as well as academic excellence. It also offers arts and athletics opportunities. Learn more at

Riverside Military Academy: A boarding school in Gainesville for boys 6th through 12th grades from the U.S. and several other countries. The setting is focused on rigor and accountability in a military-style setting and offers extracurricular activities including sports at the GHSA level. Learn more at

Elachee Nature Academy: A nature-focused school offering preschool through third grades. Curriculum focuses on inquiry and spending time in the outdoors. Learn more

Maranatha Christian Academy: In Oakwood, this school serves students preschool to 12th grade from Christian households. The Bible is not merely a part of its core curriculum, “but is the source of all truth,” according to its website. Learn more at

Chattahoochee Christian School: This K-8 faith-based school located in Clermont uses Bible curriculum from Positive Action for Christ, supplemented with materials from Bob Jones University Press. Learn more at

Academy of Innovation: This Gainesville school offers a personalized approach to teaching children in grades first through 12th, balancing classroom instruction with an individualized environment. Learn more at

Gainesville Homeschool Academy: This K-5 cooperative Christian school meets at the Westminster Presbyterian Church in Gainesville. Classroom instruction is provided three days a week with two more instructional days at home. Learn more at

Phoenix Academy: Based in Gainesville, this K-12 school provides a Christian-based hybrid online education with support from staff and the ability to come into the school. Learn more at

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