RENO/SPARKS, Nev. — From the first days of kindergarten to graduating from the University of Nevada, Reno with a bachelor's, master's or doctorate degree, the educational systems in Northern Nevada provide students all they need to reach their educational goals.
kids in Washoe County are finishing their basic required education than ever
before. In 2010 the graduation rate for Washoe County School District was a
dismal 62 percent (although it was a few points higher than the state average
of 58 percent). In 2017 and 2018, however, 84 percent of students graduated on
time, the district reports, with 49 percent of WCSD students earning advanced
or honors diplomas.
goal is to achieve a 90 percent graduation rate in 2020 — although Damonte
Ranch, Galena, Incline, McQueen, Reed and Reno high schools eclipsed that mark
for the 2017-2018 school year, the district reports.
an enrollment standpoint, 63,794 students were enrolled in the Washoe County
School District for the 2018-2019 school year. The district encompasses 62
elementary schools, 14 middle schools and 14 high schools, and 66 percent of
educators in the district hold a master's degree or higher.
McNeill, interim superintendent of the Washoe County School District, says the
district's foundation will always be to provide a quality public educational
experience to all students regardless of race, gender, abilities, language or
vital that we prepare all of our students, from pre-kindergarten through high
school, for the world outside the classroom,” McNeill says. “The education our
students receive will stay with them throughout their lives, and we are
grateful to all of our educators who have taken on this tremendous
responsibility — this is a calling. Each of our staff members plays a vital
role in the promise of public education — to produce community-minded and
Three new schools opened in 2019: Desert Skies Middle School in Sun Valley; Sky Ranch Middle School in Spanish Springs; and Nick Poulakidas Elementary School in South Reno. These state-of-the art schools address overcrowding at elementary and middle schools, McNeill says.
Additionally, the district significantly renovated and refurbished many of its older schools using funding from the 2016 ballot initiative WC-1. Forty-six percent of schools in the district were built before 1975.
“We want all of our students to be able to learn and grow in an atmosphere that is conducive to learning,” McNeill says.
from the main school district, there also are a handful of private educational
institutions in the area, including Sage Ridge (grades 3-12), Bishop Manogue Catholic
High School and Davidson Academy, all of which provide personalized learning
for exceptionally gifted middle and high school students.
Students seeking college degrees often attend Truckee Meadows Community College or the University of Nevada, Reno. In spring 2019, there were more than 10,600 students registered at TMCC.
In 2015, the Nevada System of Higher Education Board of Regents approved two bachelor's degree programs at TMCC — logistics and public safety. The college also offers baccalaureate degrees in manufacturing and dental hygiene, as well as dozens of associate degrees and certificates.
of Nevada, Reno, meanwhile, is the educational capstone for many residents of
the Truckee Meadows. Founded in 1874 in Elko, UNR is the state's sole
land-grant institution. It's also a designated Research 1 University by the
Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, the foundation's highest
than 21,400 students enrolled at UNR in spring of 2019, including 3,200
graduate students. The university offers 426 degree, certificate and minor
programs, including 129 graduate programs.
Carman, the university's executive vice president and provost, says UNR
students can expect to receive an outstanding education from faculty who are
scholarly leaders within their disciplines.
they learn, they will have the opportunity to be directly engaged with research
and have opportunities to serve the community through programs such as
internships and service-learning classes,” Carman says. “Students will benefit
from modern, cutting-edge facilities, such as the Mathewson-IGT Knowledge
Center, the Pennington Student Achievement Center, the E.L. Wiegand Fitness
Center and the Pennington Engineering Building.”
The university has corporate partnerships with regional businesses so that certain degree programs dovetail with employer needs in key industry sectors such as gaming, technology, engineering, mining and logistics.
The university powers the economic engine of Northern Nevada in many other ways as well, Carman says.
“Our medical school, nursing, public health, and social work programs provide a skilled workforce to meet the rapidly expanding and social welfare needs of the region. Our education program provides teachers and administrators for the WCSD,” he says. “Our College of Liberal Arts provides expertise to law enforcement through its criminal justice program and talented musicians, artists and performers who contribute to the local arts and entertainment sector.”