Winter break is almost upon us and high school students across Texas are eager to finish up exams and head home for the holidays. We’re sure that after a few days on the couch, however, students will be missing their friends, coursework (eh, maybe not) and classrooms — especially if they attend one of the most beautiful high schools in the state. That’s why we’ve rounded up a list of the most stunning schools in Texas, just in time for the end of the semester. Does seeing your alma mater on this list make you wish you could stay there forever? Or could you go for an eternal Christmas vacation? See which schools ranked in the top-25 most beautiful below! P.S. If you’re not tired of learning yet, winter break is one of the easiest times to start drivers ed. Finish it on your smartphone in no time with Aceable.
25. Plano East High School
This Dallas-area high school consists of five interconnected buildings surrounding a central lake. Built in 1981, the high school was most recently updated in 2010 with the addition of a new science wing. Bridges and walkways surrounding the lake give students a view of the water every day.
24. Texas School for the Deaf (Austin)
Located in Austin’s famous South Congress neighborhood, this roughly 68-acre campus has a gorgeous view of the downtown skyline. Though originally founded in 1856, construction on the current campus began in the late ’80s. The architects working on the school won an award for their design in 1999.
Situated along Fort Brown Resaca in a historical area of Brownsville, this South Texas high school is home to just over 400 students. Located on the site that encompasses the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley and Texas Southmost College, the high school is affiliated with both institutions.
22. Transmountain Early College High School (El Paso)
A collection of small, Spanish-style buildings, Transmountain Early College High School rests in the shadows of the stunning Franklin Mountains. The understated campus lets the natural beauty of the Trans-Pecos region shine.
This 75-acre campus in southwest Fort Worth encompasses beautiful stucco buildings and plentiful green space. Amenities include state-of-the-art classrooms, up-to-date athletic complexes and an Upper School courtyard.
20. The John Cooper School (The Woodlands)
Founded in 1988, this college preparatory school boasts brand-new buildings, including a math and science center that houses a rooftop garden and robotics lab. Located just north of Houston, The John Cooper School campus is characterized by large wooded areas and modern architecture.
19. Samuel V. Champion High School (Boerne)
Built in 2008, Champion High School in Boerne has won multiple awards for its design, including the Governor’s Award for Environmental Excellence. Designed by Pfluger Architects, the school makes use of several eco-friendly elements, such as natural lighting and a rainwater harvesting system.
18. Lovejoy High School (Lucas)
Built in 2006, this beautiful brick campus encompasses a central courtyard, tree-lined walkways and outstanding athletic facilities. The 10-year-old high school is home to more than 1,100 students in the north Dallas area.
17. Cypress Lakes High School (Katy)
Established in 2008, Cypress Lakes High School was designed by PBK Architects, who developed the blueprints for several other schools in the Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School District. Its unique facade with radius windows and arched entryways echoes that of a medieval castle.
16. Cypress Ranch High School (Cypress)
Built in the same year as Cypress Lakes, this Harris County high school houses more than 3,700 students. Though similar in design to other institutions in its school district, Cypress Ranch has its own distinct entryway and color scheme.
15. Cy-Fair High School (Cypress)
The oldest high school in the Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School District, Cy-Fair was dedicated by sitting First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt in 1941. Its Neoclassical design has served as the inspiration for many other schools in its district. Though renovated several times since it was built, the original exterior of Cy-Fair has been preserved throughout its history.
This 370-acre campus overlooking the Colorado River is known affectionately by students and staff as “The Hill.” Unique elements of the campus include a chapel, observatory and pedestrian green.
12. Celina High School
Celina High School is less than 10 years old, but the plot of land on which it sits has a history that goes back 120 years. In 1896, the Hubbards founded one of the first free public institutions in the area, Alla School, on what is now Celina High’s campus. A memorial for Alla stands just a few feet from the entrance to the new high school.
11. Prosper High School
This five-year old building has a beautiful brick exterior and state-of-the art-facilities to boot. At Prosper High School, students can take advantage of a broadcast studio, greenhouse and indoor football training field.
10. The Hockaday School (Dallas)
Established at the turn of the 20th century, Hockaday moved to its current campus in 1961. Facilities on the 100-acre campus include lighted tennis courts, an engineering lab and a wellness center.
9. Highland Park High School (University Park)
Built in 1937, Highland Park High School has undergone many renovations over the years, though its original brick design has remained. In 2003, the school got a major upgrade that included new classroom space and a larger cafeteria.
8. Byron Nelson High School (Trophy Club)
This massive school building in the Dallas-Forth Worth area encompasses two gyms, a courtyard and a theater that seats 800. Though large, Bryon Nelson High was designed to include eco-friendly elements, such as energy-efficient lighting.
Founded in 1906, St. Mark’s occupies 40 acres of land in Northwest Dallas. Facilities include a natatorium, fitness center and amphitheater. One of the school’s most beautiful buildings is the chapel, which houses a stunning pipe organ in the English design.
6. The Woodlands College Park High School
Designed by PBK Architects, College Park High is easily identifiable by the striking teal-domed tower at the entrance of the school. Remnants of classical architecture, like arched windows and columns, give this Houston-area high school a collegiate feel.
5. TMI-The Episcopal School of Texas (San Antonio)
Texas Military Institute has moved several times since it was founded, but the current campus rests in the Hill Country surrounded by Central Texas’ natural beauty. Unique aspects of the campus include a 500-seat chapel, butterfly garden and ceramics building. All facilities are made from locally sourced limestone.
4. The Brook Hill School (Bullard)
A residential campus marked by white-columned buildings, expansive green lawns and connecting walkways, The Brook Hill School occupies 280 acres in Bullard, Texas. The most prominent structure on its campus is the dome-shaped Founder’s Hall, which houses a museum and Upper School classrooms.
3. Thomas Jefferson High School (San Antonio)
Built in the 1930’s in the Spanish-Moorish design, Thomas Jefferson High is one of the most ornate school buildings in the state. Baroque details on the exterior columns were hand carved by Italian architect Hannibal Pianta, who immigrated to Texas at the turn of the century. Fifty-one years after the school was constructed, it was named to the National Register of Historic Places.
2. Lubbock High School
Designed in the Spanish Colonial style, Lubbock High School features a baroque tower and red tile roofing. Built in 1930, the school is now listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.
1. El Paso High School
Overlooking downtown El Paso and resting at the foot of the Franklin Mountains, this Greco-Roman style high school is considered one of the area’s architechtural masterpieces. Its football field, which is partially encircled by the school building, was named one of the “high school stadiums to see before you die” by MaxPreps.com.