From Pre-School to Med School…

A faculty member speaks with a group of students gathered around a table with notebooks and laptops

Whether you have school-age kids or are looking to continue your own education or work in the industry, it’s smart to do some homework on local schools. Here’s a quick cheat sheet on various education options available in Greater Peoria.

A+ Public Schools

Many public school districts throughout the region — from Dunlap to Washington — regularly get top marks from the Illinois State Board of Education for excellence. Curious about public school performance in specific local communities? Illinois Report Card is the state’s official source for information. You can go beyond test scores to get a snapshot of every public school.

Options for High Achievers

A number of Greater Peoria school districts serve academically gifted students in different ways — including the only International Baccalaureate program in Illinois outside of Chicago at Richwoods High School. Within Peoria Public Schools, high achievers also may take advantage of:

At partner schools around the region, students who are college-ready by the end of their sophomore year may enroll at Illinois Central College for their final two years of high school — earning their high school diploma and associate’s degree simultaneously! 

That’s Private

Thinking about going the private school route? You have plenty of options in Greater Peoria. That includes faith-based schools like Peoria Notre Dame — with its rigorous AP Capstone program through the internationally recognized College Board — as well as Peoria Christian School and Daarul Uloom Islamic School. Private institutions like Peoria Academy provide a world-class option, while Montessori Academy of Peoria and Montessori School of Peoria offer a unique environment designed to teach children to think creatively.

A Promise to Keep

Peoria Promise is a tuition reimbursement program aimed at increasing the number of high school graduates who complete advanced schooling, thereby fostering a more skilled workforce in the region. Over the past 15 years, Peoria Promise has provided $7 million of tuition support to over 5,000 students, funded entirely by the local business community.

Greater Engagement

When it comes to student engagement, did you know the top university in Illinois — and one of the top 25 private universities in the U.S. — is located in Greater Peoria? That’s right, the Wall Street Journal and Times Higher Education have given Bradley University that ranking five years in a row. Founded in 1897 by Lydia Moss Bradley, this private institution of about 6,000 students offers more than 185 undergraduate and graduate academic programs and 11 NCAA Division I athletic programs.

Presidential Alma Mater

The 40th U.S. President, Ronald Reagan, once called Greater Peoria home — when he was an undergraduate at Eureka College. A small, private college founded by abolitionists from Kentucky, Eureka was the first in Illinois and the third in the nation to admit men and women on an equal basis. Today, 550 undergraduates have their choice of 32 majors and 14 pre-professional programs.

College for the Community

More than 150 areas of study. 55 certificates. GED and transfer programs. It’s all available — affordably — at Illinois Central College. This community college has been serving 10 counties in the Greater Peoria area since 1967, touching more than half a million lives. One out of every four graduating high school students within the district comes to ICC today.

Home to Future Physicians

The nation’s largest public medical school has a home in Greater Peoria, too. The University of Illinois College of Medicine Peoria is one of four campuses across the state — educating more than 500 medical students, residents and fellows annually. In addition to a four-year medical school curriculum, UICOMP offers 13 residency programs and 11 different fellowships, working closely with Greater Peoria’s world-class healthcare facilities.