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  • Scott Westfall

Which Virginia Beach School District is Best for Your Family?

Updated: Aug 14, 2022

Are you wondering what school district in Virginia Beach is the best for your family to move to? Here’s a description of every school district in the city, including public school ratings, compiled by our local Virginia Beach experts.

Virginia Beach High School District Map Overlay - 2022

When moving to a new location, your children’s education is a major factor in choosing a home. Living in Virginia Beach is a great choice for families with children, as the city boasts some of the top-ranked public high schools in the country (with an average public high school ranking of 9 out of 10). A bonus, all Virginia Beach homes have a less-than 30-minute drive to the beach!

Also, many Virginia Beach high schools feature academies that focus on specific areas of study, which provides a unique opportunity for students to live in one school district but apply to attend an academy in a different district than where they live. Use this made-by-locals assessment of Virginia Beach independent school districts to help you decide what area is best for you!

Note about Middle and Elementary Schools

Because ‌the elementary and middle schools feed into multiple high schools, this article focuses on high school districts only. For the location of elementary and middle schools in Virginia Beach, check out the city school locator map here.

Need some ideas for family fun this season in Virginia Beach? Check out these top things to do locally!

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Bayside High School District

Bayside High School District makes up the northwestern portion of Virginia Beach. This district encompasses Virginia Wesleyan University, Haygood Shopping Center, and Cypress Point Golf Club. Bayside could be the best school district to move to for a family looking for an affordable home in Virginia Beach with an easy commute to Norfolk, Chesapeake, or other areas of Virginia Beach.

Location: Bayside District stretches north and south along Independence Blvd., from Little Creek Naval Base to Rt. 264. It borders Norfolk near the Norfolk Outlet Malls, and it provides easy access to Rt. 64 and Rt. 264.

Bayside Home Prices (2021 median prices):

  • 3-4 bedroom single-family home: $322,138

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom condo or townhome: $210,500

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom rental: $1,550/month

Notable Bayside Neighborhoods: Cypress Point, Lake Smith Terrace, Ridgely Manor, Aragona Village, Pocahontas Village

Bayside High School, Virginia Beach, Marlin Mascot
Bayside High School Mascot

The High School: Bayside High School serves just under 2,000 students and has 115 teachers, and is rated 5 out of 10 by the Public School Review. It features the Health Sciences Academy for students interested in pursuing college prep courses in pre-medicine, pre-veterinary, nursing, and more.

Other Schools in Bayside District: Shelton Park Elementary, Bayside Elementary, Luxford Elementary, Diamond Springs Elementary, Williams Elementary, Newtown Elementary, Old Donation Elementary Gifted School, Bayside Middle, Independence Middle

Things to Do in Bayside: For the outdoors lover, spend the day boating or fishing on Lake Smith, or hit the green at Cypress Point Golf Course. Or head down to the Haygood Shopping Center to visit your favorite stores or the Haygood Skating Center!

Our Favorite Bayside Area Restaurants:

  • Nara Sushi: Comfortable atmosphere, great lunch specials, and some of the best sushi in Virginia Beach

  • 757 Korean BBQ: An authentic, fresh take on Korean barbeque that’s off the beaten path

Frank W. Cox High District

Virginia Beach’s Cox High School District could be the best place to live for families looking for a combination of high-rated schools and incredible views, as it features neighborhoods on the Chesapeake Bay, Lynnhaven River, and Atlantic Ocean.

‌Location: The Frank W. Cox High School District is found along the Great Neck corridor in Virginia Beach all the way to the north end of the Oceanfront.

Cox Home Prices (2021 median prices):

  • 3-4 bedroom single-family home: $584,163

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom condo or townhome: $297,250

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom rental: $1,850/month

Notable Cox Neighborhoods: North End, Bay Colony, Birdneck Point, Broad Bay Island, Great Neck Meadows, Laurel Cove, Chic’s Beach, Baylake Pines, Ocean Park, Cape Henry Shores, Cape Story by the Sea

Ariel view of the North End neighborhood, beach, and Atlantic Ocean.

The High School: About 1,850 students attend Cox High School, and it boasts a 10 out of 10 Public School Review rating. The student:teacher ratio is about 18:1, and it ranks in the top 5% of schools in Virginia academically.

Other Schools in Cox District: John B. Dey Elementary, Trantwood Elementary, Kings Grant Elementary, Malibu Elementary, Kingston Elementary, Great Neck Middle, Virginia Beach Middle, Lynnhaven Middle

Things to Do in Cox: This district has lots of family-friendly activities on the water, with plenty of access to the Chesapeake Bay and Atlantic Ocean. One popular outing is a visit to Cape Henry Lighthouse on Fort Story, or the great hikes found at First Landing State Park and the Cape Henry Trail. Cox High is located right by the Great Neck Recreation Center, which features plenty of fitness classes, youth activities, and an indoor pool.

Our Favorite Cox Area Restaurants:

  • Hot Tuna: Surfer-chic vibes at a farm-to-fork seafood bar and grill

  • Carib Shack: Caribbean fare featured on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives with Guy Fieri

First Colonial High School District

First Colonial High School District is what often comes to mind when families first decide to move to Virginia Beach, as it encompasses the famous Atlantic Avenue and boardwalk along the popular oceanfront beach. Other notable areas in this district are Kings Grant and Alanton. Families want to live in this district because, along with the perks of being a tourist destination, its high school is one of the best around.

Location: Bordering the north side of the Oceana Naval Air Station as well as the Atlantic Ocean, First Colonial District includes many highly sought-after neighborhoods across Virginia Beach’s many inlets and bays.

First Colonial Home Prices (2021 median prices):

  • 3-4 bedroom single-family home: $490,250

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom condo or townhome: $301,200

  • 2 bedroom/2 bathroom rental: $1,735/month

Homes in Croatan Neighborhood in First Colonial High School District of Virginia Beach.
Aerial View of Croatan Neighborhood

Notable First Colonial Neighborhoods: Alanton, Shadowlawn, Old Beach, Vibe District, Kings Grant, Little Neck, Linkhorn, Croatan

The High School: First Colonial High School is home to the Virginia Beach Legal Studies Academy, and employs just over 100 teachers to serve its 1,900 students. Public School Review gave it a 10 out of 10 rating.

Other Schools in First Colonial District: Alanton Elementary, Cooke Elementary, Seatack Elementary, Virginia Beach Middle, Lynnhaven Middle

Things to Do in First Colonial: There’s always something for everyone in First Colonial! Check out the creative ViBe district, or head over to Hilltop for some great shopping. Your family will love the Virginia Aquarium and Adventure Park, free entertainment along the boardwalk during Live! On Atlantic, and Ocean Breeze Waterpark.

Our Favorite First Colonial Area Restaurants:

  • Commune: A modern rustic breakfast-and-lunch spot serving sustainable products - many from their own backyard garden

  • Nick’s Raw Bar and Grill: A time-tested Virginia Beach favorite for comfort food, founded in 1952

Green Run High School District

Green Run High School District is one of the more affordable areas of Virginia Beach, with both a traditional public school and a charter school for high schoolers. It consists of many larger established neighborhoods of single-family homes and well-run homeowners associations, and it was also the district with the highest number of rental homes in 2021. Real estate consultants will advise this area is best for families with a moderate budget and a desire to be a part of the family-friendly local community.

Location: The Green Run District is found south of Rt. 264 and west of Oceana Naval Station in Virginia Beach.

Green Run Home Prices (2021 median prices):

  • 3-4 bedroom single-family home: $289,950

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom condo or townhome: $219,458

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom rental: $1,575/month

Notable Green Run Neighborhoods: Oak Springs, Chimney Hill, Windsor Woods, Bow Creek, Timberlake

The High School: Green Run High School itself boasts an 8 out of 10 school rating, with ‌1,475 students and 92 teachers. This district is also home to Green Run Collegiate public charter school, which provides students access to an International Baccalaureate education.

Other Schools in Green Run District: Lynnhaven Elementary, Windsor Oaks Elementary, Brookwood Elementary, Holland Elementary, Green Run Elementary, Rosemont Elementary, White Oaks Elementary, Parkway Elementary, Green Run Middle, Plaza Middle

Things to Do in Green Run: The state-of-the-art Bow Creek Recreation Center is a great place to visit with a membership or day pass, as is the Bow Creek Golf Course next door. Lynnhaven Mall is a local hot-spot for shopping and entertainment.

Our Favorite Green Run Area Restaurants:

Floyd Kellam High School District

The Kellam High School District is the largest by land size in Virginia Beach, with the spacious rural farmland of the Pungo and the quiet beaches of Sandbridge making up most of the area. It’s the perfect school district to find a home for families that desire a bit more elbow room or dream of living on or near a golf course.

Location: The Kellam School District runs from Nimmo Parkway all the way to the North Carolina border, encompassing all of the Pungo and Sandbridge areas.

Kellam Home Prices (2021 median prices):

  • 3-4 bedroom single-family home: $462,688

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom condo or townhome: $322,500

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom rental: $1,895/month

Notable Kellam Neighborhoods: Asheville Park, Christopher Farms, LagoMar, Princess Anne, Sherwood Lakes, West Neck

The High School: With just over 2,000 students and 114 teachers, Floyd Kellam High School has a 9 out of 10 rating by Public School Review.

Other Schools in Kellam District: Creeds Elementary, North Landing Elementary, Christopher Farms Elementary, Princess Anne Elementary, Strawbridge Elementary, Three Oaks Elementary, Red Mill Elementary, Princess Anne Middle

Things to Do in Kellam: Along with the quiet dunes of Sandbridge and the Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge, the Kellam District is also home to the annual Pungo Strawberry Festival that attracts over 100,000 people each year for family fun. The area also features the unique Military Aviation Museum, as well as plenty of roadside farm stands featuring local produce, meats, and baked items.

Our Favorite Kellam Area Restaurants:

  • The Bee and The Biscuit: A 1919 cottage-turned-brunch-spot serving dishes made from fresh produce from local Pungo farmers

  • Blue Pete’s: Great brunch and sandwiches, live music, and waterfront views

Kempsville High School District

The Kempsville area was once its own town until it was consolidated with Virginia Beach in 1963. With land at a premium, apartments, condominiums and townhomes outnumber single-family homes in this district. Kempsville district could be the best choice to move to for families looking for well-established neighborhoods, top-ranked schools, and more bang for your buck regarding home prices.

‌Location: The Kempsville High School District borders the city of Norfolk, lying just south of Rt. 264 and east of Rt. 64. Located at the head of the eastern branch of the Elizabeth River, it provides easy access to all of Hampton Roads.

Kempsville Home Prices (2021 median prices):

  • 3-4 bedroom single-family home: $358,750

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom condo or townhome: $236,725

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom rental: $1,625/month

Notable Kempsville Neighborhoods: Arrowhead, Kempsville Lake, Fairfield, Kempsville Colony

Kempsville High School Logo, Virginia Beach, VA, home of the Entrepreneurship and Business Academy

The High School: Kempsville High School boasts an impressive 9 out of 10 Public School Review rating and serves over 1,650 students with 97 teachers. It is also home to the Entrepreneurship and Business Academy of Virginia Beach.

Other Schools in Kempsville District: Woodstock Elementary, Arrowhead Elementary, Point O’View Elementary, Kempsville Elementary, Kempsville Meadows Elementary, Providence Elementary, Indian Lakes Elementary, Kempsville Middle, Larkspur Middle

Things to Do in Kempsville: A testament to education in Hampton Roads, Kempsville District is home to the Union Kempsville High School Museum that celebrates the rich history of diversity and education for all in Virginia Beach. Families can also enjoy entertainment at local favorites like Topgolf, the Kempsville Recreation Center, or the Kempsville Greens.

Our Favorite Kempsville Area Restaurants:

  • Aloha Hawaiian BBQ: Relaxing island vibes, mix of Hawaiian and Asian cuisines

  • Coastal Cafe: Called “Kempsville’s Neighborhood Hangout,” a local favorite for surf and turf fare

Landstown High School District

Landstown High School District offers easy access to the Virginia Beach Sportsplex or Fieldhouse, so it’s the best district for families whose kids are athletes and will be frequenting the sporting fields. Homes are more spread out in this area, and it’s a great spot for those working in Chesapeake but wanting to live in Virginia Beach.

‌Location: This district stretches from London Bridge Road west to the border of Chesapeake, centering around the area that is home to Landstown Commons, the Virginia Beach Amphitheater, and Princess Anne Hospital.

Landstown Home Prices (2021 median prices):

  • 3-4 bedroom single-family home: $365,000

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom condo or townhome: $205,000

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom rental: $1,715/month

Notable Landstown Neighborhoods: Landstown Meadows, Buckner Farms, Salem Lakes, Rock Creek, Cromwell Park, Landstown Commons

The High School: With a rating of 8 out of 10, Landstown High School hosts the Governor's STEM and Technology Academy in Virginia Beach. About 2,200 students are taught by 121 teachers at Landstown.

Other Schools in Landstown District: Salem Elementary, Landstown Elementary, New Castle Elementary, Landstown Middle School

Things to Do in Landstown: Landstown District hosts lots of community events, from regular concerts at the Veterans United Home Loans Amphitheater to the weekly farmer’s market at Landstown Commons. Nearby is the main campus for Tidewater Community College, where students at any of the Virginia Beach high schools can take classes for dual enrollment.

Our Favorite Landstown Area Restaurants:

Ocean Lakes High School District

Ocean Lakes is a densely-populated district, popular for its great schools and proximity to military bases, with Dam Neck Naval Base on one end and the Oceana Naval Air Station on the other. Homebuyers will find a good mix of single-family homes, townhouses, and condominiums in this area.

‌Location: Ocean Lakes High School District touches the Atlantic Ocean south of S Birdneck Road, reaching over to Nimmo Parkway and London Bridge Road to the west.

Ocean Lakes Home Prices (2021 median prices):

  • 3-4 bedroom single-family home: $348,950

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom condo or townhome: $232,775

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom rental: $1,695/month

Notable Ocean Lakes Neighborhoods: Ocean Lakes

The High School: Ocean Lakes High School has an outstanding 10 out of 10 Public School Review rating, with 125 teachers serving its 2,100 students. Students can attend Ocean Lakes for the Mathematics and Science Academy.

Other Schools in Ocean Lakes District: Corporate Landing Elementary, Ocean Lakes Elementary, Corporate Landing Middle

Things to Do in Ocean Lakes: This district is home to many wonderful parks like Ocean Lakes Park and Red Wing Park, as well as family-favorite outings like Hunt Club Farm and Motor World. Golf enthusiasts can enjoy a day at Red Wing Golf Course near Lake Redwing.

Our Favorite Ocean Lakes Area Restaurants:

Princess Anne High School District

Home to the City Business District of Virginia Beach (also known as Town Center), the Princess Anne High School District is in the center of Virginia Beach life. Most of the homes in this area are single-family homes, townhouses, and condominiums - though you can even find penthouse suites available on the top floors of the tallest building in Virginia - the Westin Hotel. This area is popular with young professionals and young families looking for a starter home.

Location: Offering convenient access to Chic’s Beach, the Virginia Beach Oceanfront, and downtown Norfolk, the Princess Anne District is located north of Rt. 264 surrounding the Lynnhaven Bay.

Princess Anne Home Prices (2021 median prices):

  • 3-4 bedroom single-family home: $349,125

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom condo or townhome: $215,250

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom rental: $1,600/month

Notable Princess Anne Neighborhoods: North Central, Haygood Point, Witch duck Point, Thoroughgood, Windsor Woods

The High School: With about 1,800 students, 118 teachers, and a 9 out of 10 rating, Princess Anne High is known for its International Baccalaureate Program to prepare students for higher education.

Enterance to Princess Anne High School in Virginia Beach, VA

Other Schools in Princess Anne District: Thoroughgood Elementary, Pembroke Meadows Elementary, Thalia Elementary, Malibu Elementary, Windsor Woods Elementary, Independence Middle

Things to Do in Princess Anne: There is no shortage of fitness opportunities in this area, with the famous landfill-turned-beautiful-park Mount Trashmore and rock climbing at Latitude Climbing in Pembroke Mall. Town Center also features the popular entertainment center Apex or live concerts and theatre at the Sandler Center or Zieder’s American Dream Theatre.

Our Favorite Princess Anne Area Restaurants:

Salem High School District

Salem High School District is a wonderful zone for families, with top-rated schools and quiet neighborhoods away from the hustle and bustle of downtown Virginia Beach. Homes tend to be more affordable and spread out in Salem.

Location: Tucked in the northeast corner of Landstown, the Salem School District follows Indian River Road along Stumpy Lake and stretches up around Ferrell Parkway.

Salem Home Prices (2021 median prices):

  • 3-4 bedroom single-family home: $345,750

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom condo or townhome: $224,325

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom rental: $1,650/month

Notable Salem Neighborhoods: Bellamy Plantation, Indian Lakes, Glenwood Community, Rosemont Forest, Salem Woods, Wyndamere

Buying a home in Salem High School District, Virginia Beach, VA

The High School: Salem High School and its Visual and Performing Arts Academy boast a remarkable 10 out of 10 Public School Review rating, with about 1,750 students to its 103 teachers.

Other Schools in Salem District: Rosemont Forest Elementary, Greenwood Elementary, Salem Middle

Things to Do in Salem: Spend a peaceful afternoon at Stumpy Lake Country Club and Natural Area, or enjoy 18 holes at the Honey Bee Golf Club. Salem Woods Park features separate dog parks for big and small pooches, as well as a newly-renovated athletic field.

Our Favorite Salem Area Restaurants:

  • Sakura Sushi: All-you-can-eat delicious sushi, sashimi, and ice cream

  • Honeybee Grill: Located in the Honey Bee Golf Club, serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner favorites

Tallwood High School District

Tallwood High School District holds much Virginia Beach history, with many neighborhoods in the area dating to the late 1700’s. This area is also the home of Regent University, the popular hotel and conference center, The Founders Inn and Spa, and the headquarters for the Christian Broadcasting Network.

Location: Tallwood School District borders the city of Chesapeake, including neighborhoods on the southeastern portion of the Elizabeth River. Enclosed in the district are the Virginia Beach portions of Centerville Turnpike and Military Highway.

Tallwood Home Prices (2021 median prices):

  • 3-4 bedroom single-family home: $341,625

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom condo or townhome: $252,500

  • 2-3 bedroom/2 bathroom rental: $1,675/month

Notable Tallwood Neighborhoods: College Park, Level Green, Charlestown Lakes, Indian Lakes, Glennwood, Rosemont Forest, Brigadoon, Woodridge Pointe

The High School: Tallwood High School, known for its Global Studies and World Languages Academy, has about 2,000 students and 110 teachers. It earned a 7 out of 10 Public School Review rating.

Other Schools in Tallwood District: Tallwood Elementary, College Park Elementary, Centerville Elementary, Brandon Middle

Things to Do in Tallwood: For a unique experience, take a free backstage tour of the CBN headquarters and join the studio audience at The 700 Club. Follow that up with a lovely stroll around the manicured, colonial-themed campus of Regent University. City View Park is also a family favorite, with its softball fields, volleyball and basketball courts, and playgrounds.

Our Favorite Tallwood Area Restaurants:


No matter where you move to in Virginia Beach, both homes and schools in this area offer a great investment for your family. Contact Scott Westfall with CGP for a free daily list of the available on- and off-market homes in Virginia Beach school districts that are best for your family.

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