Area Schools and Higher Education Opportunities

Abilene is home to two award-winning public-school districts, two charter schools and a wide array of private school options and homeschooling support as well as six institutions of higher education.


Abilene Independent School District

Abilene ISD features two traditional high schools, a STEM academy high school, a medical high school magnet program and an alternative high school for at-risk students. AISD is also home to four middle schools, thirteen elementary schools, one alternative placement campus, and one adult education center. Abilene ISD covers 106 square miles in Taylor and Jones counties. Approximately 15,300 students are enrolled in Abilene ISD for the 2022-23 school year. Abilene ISD employs nearly 2,500 individuals, more than 80% of whom work directly with students on a daily basis.

By the Numbers

Abilene ISD



Enrolled in Abilene ISD



Employed with Abilene ISD
wylie isd dance team

Wylie Independent School District

Wylie ISD includes an early childhood center, two elementary schools, two intermediate schools, two junior high schools, and a high school. The district spans 21 buildings and more than 136 square miles. Approximately 5,400 students are enrolled in Wylie ISD for the 2022-2023 school year. Wylie ISD has 696 employees, 365 of whom are teachers serving grades Pre-K through 12.

By The Numbers

Wylie ISD



Enrolled at Wylie ISD



Serving Grades Pre-K through 12

Additional Educational Options

Premier High School

Premier High School offers students the unique opportunity to earn a diploma outside of the overcrowded high school setting through a self-directed academic program. The staff at Premier High School help to design a program tailored to each student’s individual and career goals. The academic system is built around the student’s needs and with the correct tools for students to strengthen their academic weaknesses and improve upon their strengths. Premier’s self-directed curriculum, passionate teachers and proven academic programs help students achieve their goals on their own terms. As a charter school, the campus is small by design, which gives it a private school atmosphere where parents, faculty and staff can work together for the benefit of each child, but Premier High School is a tuition-free public school of choice.

Learn More About Premier High School

Texas Leadership of Abilene (TLCA)

TLCA Abilene is a public charter school that serves students in kindergarten through 12th grade at two different campuses and provides innovative learning in a challenging and enriching environment. All TLCA campuses have a focus on leadership and live by a shared mission, vision and values. Those principles guide faculty and staff to develop leaders with the necessary skills to achieve success in the 21st century. TLCA Abilene is a part of the Texas Leadership Public Schools District. As a public charter school that is open to all students, regardless of attendance zone, academics and rigor are held to the same standards as a traditional ISD. The district focuses on data-driven instruction, one-to-one teacher interaction, innovative learning and high-quality instruction.

Learn More About the TLCA

Educational Options Abound

In addition to thriving public schools, Abilene families can choose from several private schools, a homeschooling community and a traditional/homeschool hybrid education model.

Abilene Christian School is an accredited pre-K through 12th grade school on one campus. For more than 100 years, ACS has consistently achieved academic excellence by providing quality education in a Christ centered atmosphere. Students at ACS regularly compete at regional and state levels in academics, fine arts, athletics and Destination Imagination. K-5th grade students receive technology instruction in the classroom, and all secondary students have technology instruction in the digital learning center on a weekly basis. Students may accumulate college credit through dual enrollment partnerships with Cisco College and Abilene Christian University. Learn more.

For more than 25 years, Big Country Home Educators has supported home school families of the Texas Big Country. BCHE provides resources in the areas of mentoring, events, group classes and networking to help families have the richest home education experience possible. In addition to two different weekly co-op class options, activities for BCHE members include campouts, a science and history fair, weekly skating and bowling, zoo classes, art classes through the Grace Museum, a spelling bee, teen nights, banquets, proms, field day, weekly physical education classes, sports education, mentoring, holiday parties, National Honor Society, band, choir, competition archery, student council, field trips, graduation ceremonies and more. Learn more.

Cornerstone Christian School has been equipping students to excel for 40 years. The school includes seven dedicated teachers, including a qualified technology instructor. Future 2023 Abilene Community Guide & Directory 65 plans for development include creative arts, physical education, and Spanish courses, as well as junior high expansion. Cornerstone graduates have received recognition through National Merit Scholarships, National Honor Society, top ten percent, Duke Scholarship Awards, Presidential Scholarships, Valedictorian, and UIL Rankings at the state and national levels. Learn more.

Kenley School is an accredited first through eighth grade school in Abilene. For more than 50 years, Kenley School has been a pioneer in the field of teaching students with learning disabilities. Kenley School features small classes with a staff-student ratio of one to six. A highly trained staff provides differentiated instruction for students while incorporating hands-on experiences to facilitate learning. The goal of Kenley School is to help students with learning disabilities achieve their greatest potential in a place where they feel safe and successful and experience the joy of learning. Learn more.

PEAK Christian Academy is a hybrid school incorporating the best practices and philosophies of both home educating and playful learning. Meeting three days a week on “collaboration days” gives students the social learning atmosphere that is required for 21st century learners. Certified teachers instruct groups of mixed age students three days a week and give assignments for “independent days” at home partnering with parents. PEAK currently serves elementary and middle school grade levels. Learn more.

St. John’s Episcopal School began as a Kindergarten in 1952 with 18 students and today serves students from 2 years old through the 5th grade. SJES teachers support, stretch and challenge students to become resilient, self reliant, independent learners and thinkers. Students benefit from a comprehensive curriculum that includes music, technology, art, Godly play, library, Spanish, P.E. and science. By weaving Episcopalian principles into the very fabric of the school’s overall life, St. John’s ensures that its foundation is a Christian love that guides and challenges all who attend these schools to build lives of genuine meaning, purpose, and service in the world they will inherit. Learn more.

Higher Education

Higher-education institutions in the area provide Abilene residents with ample opportunity for greater learning from trade-schools to one of the largest four-year universities in Texas.



Founded in 1906, Abilene Christian University is a diverse, welcoming, academically rigorous community redefining what it means to be a Christian university in the 21st century. It has been acknowledged as one of the top institutions in the nation for first-year experiences, service learning and learning communities. In 2022-23, U.S. News & World Report named it among the top 50 universities nationwide for both undergraduate research and undergraduate teaching. A selective four-year private Christian university, ACU includes the colleges of Arts and Sciences, Biblical Studies, Business Administration, Education and Human Services, Graduate and Professional Studies, and Honors; the Graduate School of Theology; and the schools of Information Technology and Computing, Nursing, and Social Work.

Cisco College


Since first admitting students in 1940, Cisco College has offered programs and activities intended to encourage lifelong learning and enhance the quality of life in the communities it serves. Cisco College has been offering workforce training and higher education in Abilene since 1973. As a member of the Texas state system of publicly supported institutions of higher education, Cisco College maintains an open-door admissions policy and provides an array of learning, skill development and life experiences to motivate and challenge students. Classes are offered at two primary locations, Cisco and Abilene, in addition to several other off-campus sites. The college strives to maintain a student/faculty ratio which facilitates close interaction between faculty and students. Cisco College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award associate level degrees.

Hardin-Simmons University


Founded in 1891, Hardin-Simmons University is a Christian university rated among the top private colleges in Texas. It offers students the chance to discover their God given potential in an atmosphere that feels like home. Hardin-Simmons boasts five schools encompassing liberal arts, science and mathematics, business and professional studies, health professions, and nursing, plus graduate programs. Its core curriculum is based on a liberal arts foundation, providing students with skills that employers desire in their top candidates such as critical thinking, strategic communication and responsible leadership.

McMurry University


Founded in 1923 as a United Methodist institution, McMurry University is a vibrant and comprehensive center of undergraduate education. McMurry has a national reputation for excellence and value through the achievements of its faculty, students and graduates. The university enrolls more than 1,100 students and has an 11:1 student-to-faculty ratio. No graduate assistants teach courses and 77% of our professors have achieved the highest degree in their academic discipline. Students can choose from 45 majors in the arts, business, education and the sciences as well as our pre-professional programs in medicine, dentistry, engineering, law, pharmacy, physical therapy and others. The three-week May Term gives students an opportunity to explore a subject outside their major, and the Servant Leadership Program teaches students about ethics and helps develop leadership qualities.

TSTC Abilene


Serving Texas with 10 campuses statewide, Texas State Technical College has trained and placed Texans in great paying jobs for more than 55 years. TSTC graduates are highly valued by business and industry for their work ethic, knowledge and workplace skills. The college offers a wide variety of training that is in demand in the West Texas area, and it is conveniently located to serve military personnel and families stationed at Dyess Air Force Base.

TTUHSC Abilene


Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center at Abilene offers the latest in educational opportunities that provide the real-world experience necessary to understand and meet the challenges of the healthcare industry. The faculty in the schools of nursing and Jerry H. Hodge School of Pharmacy as well as the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, which are among the top institutions in the nation, provide hands on learning, helping students gain the practical knowledge necessary for their success.