Herron High School is the gold standard for excellence in education.
Why should you choose Herron High School?
- We’re innovative but rooted in classical, liberal arts traditions.
- We’re college-preparatory and are rated as the top Indianapolis public school, and in the top 1 percent in the Nation, for our college preparation.
- We truly care about the success of every student.
- We’re determined to stay diverse.
We believe in the power of education to change lives. If you believe that too, we want you to join our community.
- The Basics
- Awards & Accolades
- Student Demographic & Accountability Data
- About Herron Classical Schools
Awards & Accolades
Since our founding in 2006, Herron High School has accumulated a long list of awards and accolades that have earned it the reputation as Indianapolis’ best public high school. Its recent accolades include:
2020 – Ranked as the #1 public high school in Metro Indianapolis according to US News and World Report, and in the top 1 percent of all public high schools in the Nation
2020 – Indiana Department of Education awards Herron High School with an A grade on the state accountability report card
2018 – Ranked as the #2 public high school in Indiana according to US News and World Report, ahead of all of other central Indiana high schools including suburban schools.
2014 – 2018 – Designated a Gold Medal School by US News and World Report magazine.
2014 – Presented with Institute for Quality Education’s “Quality Matters” award for excellence in education
2012 – 2018 – Ranked among the top 1 percent of high schools nationwide by Newsweek, US News and World Report and The Washington Post
2012 – 2018 – Received an “A” grade on the Indiana Department of Education accountability report card: the only Indianapolis high school to receive that designation
2011 – 2018 – Awarded the Indiana Department of Education’s Four Star Award for Academic Excellence
2011 – Ranked #2 in the state and #208 overall in the nation in The Washington Post
2011 – One of only 6 percent of the nation’s 27,000 public schools to make it onto the “High School Challenge Index”
2010 – Honored with the NUVO Cultural Vision Award for outstanding contributions to the community for new ideas, original work and fresh solutions for stubborn problems in urban education
2010 – Ranked #27 in the nation on Newsweek’s list of “America’s Best High Schools.”
2009 – Ranked as the top-performing public high school in the state according to its improvement and accountability framework.
2007 – HHS students achieved the highest ISTEP scores of all public high schools in Marion County in language arts and math.
OTHER NOTABLE DISTINCTIONS:
- Graduation rates for the most recent classes were above 99 percent, far exceeding Indiana Department of Education targets and state averages.
- 100 percent of graduates in each of the most recent graduates were accepted to a four year college or into the military and earned more than $16 million in college scholarships.
- President Janet McNeal recognized by the Indianapolis Business Journal’s “Who’s Who in Education.”
Student Demographic & Accountability Data
The Indiana Department of Education (IDOE) and stakeholders across the state have worked to define a set of characteristics that best indicate a student’s preparation for success after high school. These characteristics are displayed in "Indiana GPS" to illustrate how students are supported, starting in kindergarten, to meet those expectations.
- Academic mastery
- Career and postsecondary readiness (credentials and experience)
- Communication and collaboration
- Work ethic and
- Civic, financial, and digital literacy
The concept for Herron High School originated in 2003 under the leadership of Joanna Beatty Taft, Executive Director of the Harrison Center for the Arts. Recognizing the need for high-quality, tuition-free public education located within the city’s urban neighborhoods, Ms. Taft brought together local residents, educators, non-profit organizations, and business leaders to create an original structure for a classical, liberal arts education.
Herron High School’s founding board believed it was essential to bring the very best educators to the table during the development phase of the school. Beginning with Robert Marzano’s concept of designing curriculum “with the end in mind,” and guided by best practices in the classroom, the founders’ vision of a well educated, world class citizen helped define the rigorous curriculum, classical format and cultural foundation for the school.
From its inception, the vision for Herron High School focused on the adaptive potential of the vacant former John Herron Art Institute campus. For many decades, these historically important buildings were the centerpiece of the art movement in Indianapolis. Herron High School’s founders believed the rebirth of the historic campus as a center of learning would provide an anchor for the community landscape and honor the heritage of the buildings. Steeped in the cultural history of the city and imbued with the great creative talents of past generations, these buildings are once again host to a new generation of students.
True to the founders’ vision, Herron High School has rapidly become one of the top public high schools in the country. Designated a 4 Star School by the Indiana Department of Education, and placing in the top 5% of schools nationwide in rankings by Newsweek, U.S. News and the Washington Post, Herron High School provides an exemplary education.
In August 2017, Herron High School proudly opened its second campus, Herron-Riverside High School. The two schools formed Indianapolis Classical Schools, later renamed to Herron Classical Schools. Herron Preparatory Academy opened its doors in August 2021.
Herron High School students remain part of our community of scholars even after they graduate. We seek to continue to provide resources and opportunities for our alumni to remain engaged in our school community.
Herron High School has a growing base of alumni. Having graduated its inaugural class of students in 2010, many of our alumni graduated college and are early in their professional careers. We want to keep alumni in touch with the school and each other.
We hope that you will keep us apprised of your accomplishments and important milestones and allow the Herron High School community to celebrate them with you. We also hope that you will keep us updated as you move from place to place.
When we know where you are living as well as reach you by email, we can be sure you receive invitations for special events, important announcements, updates, and progress reports.
Please fill out this form so that we can know what you are up to!
About Herron Classical Schools
Herron Classical Schools is one community with two great high schools – Herron High School and Herron-Riverside High School – and a new K-8 school, Herron Preparatory Academy, which opened with K-grade 2 in August 2021. HCS has one board of directors and a unified vision and mission to set a new standard for education in Central Indiana.