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Specialty Schools and Programs

Richmond Public Schools offers enrollment admission to students to attend high school in a smaller school setting. These 'specialty schools' offer rigorous college preparation, career preparation, leadership opportunities, community service, and other inspiring experiences.

Specialty School applicants are required to complete a single common application, allowing them to submit the following common components which will be applied to each school to which they apply:

  • 2 teacher recommendations
  • 1 essay
  • 1 short essay response

The applications for RPS specialty schools open Thursday, October 14, 2021. Students and families will have until Wednesday, December 1, 2021 at 4:30 PM to submit specialty school applications. No late applications will be accepted for specialty schools. While recommendation requests are due as a part of the overall application, recommenders will have until December 15, 2021 to submit their recommendations online.

Once students submit applications they will be contacted by the specialty schools to which they applied for next steps in the selection process.

Click the green buttons below to learn more about each RPS specialty school. Information about the application process, including key dates and information sessions, is available on our School Applications homepage.

begin your application at enroll RPS

Franklin Military Academy

The mission of Franklin Military Academy (FMA), a premier secondary military institution, is designed to mold tomorrow’s leaders. FMA develops leadership skills, promotes scholarship, and encourages honorable citizenship through military structure by providing rigorous learning experiences. FMA students (cadets) are immersed in public service opportunities utilizing the collective efforts of faculty, students, parents, and community partners. Upon graduation, students will be equipped with the skills necessary to be competitive at colleges and universities, as well as in the 21st-century workforce.
 
Current 5th, 8th, and 9th, and 10th grade students may apply.

Open High School

Open High School's (OHS) vision is to develop positive and informed global citizens who are working to make the world a better place. We are committed to developing responsible, resilient, creative, and compassionate students who value intellectual inquiry and social responsibility. We are a College Preparatory program, and all students take Honors, Advanced Placement, and/or Dual Enrollment courses. All students are expected to work towards the Advanced Studies Diploma.

Known at the “school without walls,” Open collaborates with the community for classroom space, elective offerings, and events throughout the year. All students are expected to fully participate in all aspects of the school and community and contribute to an environment of mutual respect between families and the school. All students must complete a minimum of 120 hours of community service and a Senior Project. 

Current 8th and 9th grade students may apply.

Learn More about open high school

Richmond Community High School

Richmond Community High School, a nationally recognized leader in urban education, is committed to preparing students to excel in a demanding, technologically sophisticated, global society by providing a college preparatory and experiential learning environment that nurtures individual achievement while embracing diversity.

Students will demonstrate mastery of rigorous college preparatory courses of study and emerge as critical thinkers and effective problem solvers. Students will develop into informed, engaged, and empowered leaders who positively impact their local and global communities. Students will achieve personal excellence by discovering and developing unique interests, talents, and gifts.

Current 8th and 9th grade students may apply.

Learn More about Richmond community high school

Thomas Jefferson High School - International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme

The Thomas Jefferson High School International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme (DP), the third program in the IB continuum, focuses on the completion of rigorous college preparatory coursework across multiple disciplines in grades 11-12. The DP offers students opportunities to demonstrate real applications of their learning in six subject areas through practical assignments and assessments while working to meet the requirements of an internationally-recognized curriculum. With a focus on skills development and inquiry, this writing-intensive program offers optimal preparation for student success at the university level. DP Courses are taught over two years.

Current 10th grade students may apply.

Learn More about TJ IB-DP

Governor's Career and Technical Education Academy for STEM

The Governor’s CTE Academy for STEM at RTC is a part-time four-year program for rising 9th graders which offers Richmond Public School students a rigorous academic and technical program of study in two career pathways, Engineering & Technology and Therapeutic Services.

The pathways are a combination of academic and technical study that integrates classroom and real-world learning. Academy coursework, teacher professional development, academic support, career and college development activities, along with parent and community involvement create a STEM community of learners.

Current 8th grade students may apply.

Learn More about the Governor's CTE Academy at RTC