Best private high schools in South Carolina

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December 13, 2021
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Best private high schools in South Carolina

America's private high schools opened long before their public counterparts and even before the United States was first established. The Roman Catholic Church in the 1700s started private schools in Florida and Louisiana while in New York (a former Dutch colony called New Amsterdam), the Dutch West India Company and Dutch Reformed Church set up private schools that filled the void left by the colonies' lack of an education system.

That changed in the 1840s when the U.S. instituted a uniform public school system. To stay relevant, private schools changed from marketing themselves as the only option to portraying their education as the "best" option. To this day, private high schools have positioned themselves as fast-tracks to admittance into elite universities. Faced with the rigorous demands of the highly competitive college admissions process and increased pressure over getting into the "right" school, parents (most often parents with means) often consider private schools for their children.

Stacker compiled a list of the best private high schools in South Carolina using rankings from Niche. Private schools have historically catered to America's most elite, with exorbitant tuition and legacy admissions ensuring the socioeconomic exclusivity of student bodies. Scholarships, incremental transparency in the admissions process, and improved (albeit still imperfect and unequal) access to excellent early education for students of all backgrounds have allowed more low-income students and minorities today to take advantage of these schools. Still, white students continue to represent the vast majority of private-school students.

Read on to find out the best private high schools in your state.

#25. Pinewood Preparatory School (Summerville)
- Enrollment: 650 (13:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A-

#24. Charleston Collegiate School (Johns Island)
- Enrollment: 320 (6:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A-

#23. Bishop England High School (Charleston)
- Enrollment: 668 (12:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A-

#22. St. Anne Catholic School (Rock Hill)
- Enrollment: 315 (6:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A

#21. John Paul II Catholic School (Ridgeland)
- Enrollment: 254 (9:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A

#20. Southside Christian School (Simpsonville)
- Enrollment: 1184 (10:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A

#19. Camden Military Academy (Camden)
- Enrollment: 300 (8:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A

#18. Cardinal Newman School (Columbia)
- Enrollment: 511 (10:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A

#17. Mead Hall Episcopal School (Aiken)
- Enrollment: 311 (5:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A

#16. Oakbrook Preparatory School (Spartanburg)
- Enrollment: 445 (7:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A

#15. Beaufort Academy (Beaufort)
- Enrollment: 344 (11:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A

#14. Ben Lippen School (Columbia)
- Enrollment: 1038 (11:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A

#13. Montessori School of Anderson (Anderson)
- Enrollment: 166 (9:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A

#12. Lowcountry Preparatory School (Pawleys Island)
- Enrollment: 145 (8:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A

#11. Heritage Academy (Hilton Head Island)
- Enrollment: 125 (6:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A

#10. Wilson Hall (Sumter)
- Enrollment: 807 (9:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A

#9. Trinity Collegiate School (Darlington)
- Enrollment: 359 (12:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A

#8. St. Joseph's Catholic School (Greenville)
- Enrollment: 680 (15:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A

#7. Ashley Hall School (Charleston)
- Enrollment: 637 (7:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A

#6. Hilton Head Preparatory School (Hilton Head Island)
- Enrollment: 436 (10:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A+

#5. Spartanburg Day School (Spartanburg)
- Enrollment: 440 (8:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A+

#4. Porter-Gaud School (Charleston)
- Enrollment: 942 (9:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A+

#3. Heathwood Hall Episcopal School (Columbia)
- Enrollment: 812 (7:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A+

#2. Hammond School (Columbia)
- Enrollment: 993 (11:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A+

#1. Christ Church Episcopal School (Greenville)
- Enrollment: 1115 (10:1 student to teacher ratio)
- Niche grade: A+

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