Education has been a touchy subject in Oklahoma for the last half-century, especially the last decade or so.

Looking past the politics and a growing majority calling for the ousting of our current Superintendent, there is at least one positive thing in Oklahoma education today.

Oklahoma may be next to last in education across the country, but at least one school is standing out in a big way, ranked in the top ten of all high schools in the nation.

Students throwing their graduation hats in the air during a graduation ceremony

According to, Oklahoma School of Science and Mathematics is the 8th best high school in America.

OSSM was created in the early 80s to benefit Oklahoma students that excelled in the fields of science and math. Over the last forty years, it has been unparalleled across the state and amongst the best schools in the nation.

How did they manage that?

It's complicated.

Being a very selective school, students benefit greatly from small class sizes and an incredible teacher/student ratio. The official website sets a goal of one teacher per four students, but 1:6 is often reported around the web.

Speaking of teachers, the staff of OSSM isn't made up of the same "emergency certified" faculty an increasing number of schools around the state are made up of. OSSM requires a minimum Master's Degree and more often an advanced PhD to teach. Simply put, better teachers, better education.

OSSM also sports a 100% graduation rate with much higher than national average ACT and SAT test scores.


What's the catch.

Students must earn their way into this prestigious school, but as a public school, it costs students zero dollars to enroll if they're established Oklahoma residents.

Like every higher education avenue in America, if you're from out of state or an international student that gets accepted, the tuition is steep.

Room and board are also included in the tuition according to the website but it's not clear if students live on campus, are housed with local families, or both. I reached out to the PR person listed on the OSSM website but haven't yet heard back.

If your kids excels in either science or math and they're terribly bored at their regular local public school, it might be worth putting in an application for them at OSSM.

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