About BCS

  • With the mission to guide all students to achieve excellence in a safe, secure and nurturing environment, the Birmingham City School System has a long and rich history of educating children since 1874 with the opening of the city’s first free school.  After more than 144 years, Birmingham City Schools continues to lead the way in education.

    With over 24,000 students enrolled in eighteen elementary schools, eight middle schools, eight  K-8 schools, seven high schools and one alternative school, Birmingham City Schools is the 5th largest school system in Alabama. Birmingham City Schools is governed by an elected board of nine members, representing the nine districts within the city.  Birmingham City Schools employs over 3,000 certified and classified workers, and operates on an annual budget of approximately $280 million dollars.

    Through an aggressive capital improvement program, Birmingham City Schools has created system-wide 21st century learning environments with state of the art buildings, modern technology and first class amenities that provide an excellent teaching and learning environment for all students and staff.    

     Birmingham City Schools offers a standards-based aligned curriculum to ensure that each student is academically challenged and performs beyond adequate in an environment where excellence is expected.  Within this framework, Birmingham City Schools offers a broad range of curriculum from early childhood to college preparatory.

    BCS proudly boasts 100% First Class Pre-K designation of each of its 47 Pre-K classes.  First class designation is synonymous with quality, and means that each of our Pre-K classrooms has met every quality standard as established by the National Institute for Early Education Research such as comprehensive early learning standards, Bachelor’s Degree level teachers with specialized early childhood training, substantial professional development for teachers, maximum class size of 20 or fewer, and a 1:10 staff to child ration.

    Birmingham City Schools is one of only 3 systems statewide to offer International Baccalaureate programming from K-12. Phillips Academy, Brown Elementary and Ramsay High School have all received International Baccalaureate designation. Phillips K-8 Academy and Brown Elementary have both been granted Primary Years designation, with Phillips receiving Middle Years Program designation, as well.   Ramsay has received IB Diploma Program status, and saw its first IB cohort graduating in 2015.

    Birmingham City Schools has five designated specialty schools.  Princeton Elementary, E.P.I.C. Elementary, W. J. Christian K-8, Phillips K-8 Academy and Ramsay High School have well-deserved reputations for high levels of student achievement. 

    With the recent addition of the Academy of Visual Communications, Birmingham City Schools has eleven Career Academies across the system’s seven high Schools.  Academies include: (1) Academy of Business and Finance;  (1) Urban Educators; (3) Health Sciences; (1) Architecture and construction; (1) Hospitality and Tourism; (2) Academy of Engineering;  (1) Visual Communications; and, (1) Information Technology.

    Birmingham City Schools promotes excellence in teaching and learning by offering a wide range of experiences for students and staff. Birmingham City Schools provides a safe, secure and nurturing environment for learning, and has developed a shared responsibility for its students by working with parents and the community.  Birmingham City Schools is leading the way toward excellence for all students.