Omaha Public Schools

Opportunities for High School Students

OPS high schools have implemented innovative Career Academies. Career Academies are small learning communities within the larger high school interested in a particular career theme. These student cohorts take academic and career education courses together centered on a career field.

  • Benson High Magnet School- Health and Wellness, Construction and Design, and Business
  • Bryan High School- Urban Agriculture, Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics
  • Burke High School- Air and Space, Focus (Leadership, Information Technology, and Communication)
  • North High Magnet School- Engineering
  • Northwest Magnet High School- Law, Public Safety, and Security
  • South High Magnet School- Information Technology

Classroom teachers meet the needs of high ability learners on a daily basis through classroom differentiation. All OPS middle schools offer honors courses in English/language arts, mathematics and science. All OPS high schools offer an array of honors courses in both core content and elective courses. These courses enhance and enrich learning experiences by accelerating the pace of instruction, by going deeper into the discipline’s knowledge and practice, and by using sophisticated levels of advanced thinking. Enrollment in honors and advanced courses is determined by standardized assessments, classroom performance, motivation, and other established criteria.

The Advanced Placement (AP) program in the Omaha Public Schools offers high school students the opportunity to take college level courses in a high school setting. For over fifty years, students in the school district have participated in the AP program, not only to gain higher-level academic skills, but also to earn college credit while still in high school. Omaha Public School high schools currently offer 30 different AP courses.

The Advanced Placement program is a cooperative education endeavor between the secondary schools and colleges/universities. AP classes have been developed and are taught by dedicated teachers whose expertise, experience, and enthusiasm for their subject area enhance the learning experience for students. Advanced Placement classes are approved by the CollegeBoard and through participation in the AP program, students broaden their intellectual horizons with challenging coursework requiring in depth study and commitment to academic excellence.

Successful completion of AP Exams offers students the opportunity to earn advanced academic college credit. This can mean substantial savings for families on courses that would otherwise have to be taken in the freshman and sophomore years in college.

Why Dual Enrollment (DE)? Besides costing less than 1/4 of the actual tuition and fees for the same course, DE provides the opportunity to earn college credit with a grade, while still in high school. With college credits earned in high school, as a new college student, students have the opportunity to have more time to pursue college courses for a double major, graduate from college early, or slightly lessen their course-load.

Dual Enrollment provides high school students the opportunity to take college credit-bearing courses taught by college-approved high school teachers. Eligible courses allow students to earn high school credit and transcripted college credit at the time they pass the course. Omaha Public Schools partners with Metropolitan Community College (MCC), University of Nebraska (UNO), Creighton University (CU), Midland University (MU), and Nebraska Wesleyan University (NWU) to provide dual enrollment opportunities in Advanced Placement (AP), Career Education, and Magnet Program/Special Program courses. Dual Enrollment is a low-cost model where students realize reduced tuition rates, where credits earned may transfer to another college or university, and where students experience a smooth transition from high school to college.

Each partner institution determines their own policies and guidelines regarding, tuition costs, application deadlines, acceptance, and transferability of credits. The state of Nebraska offers the Access College Early (ACE) scholarship for low-income high school students.

The Omaha Public Schools Career Center is a unique facility located at the Teacher Administrative Center (TAC) which offers career oriented courses for sophomores, juniors, and seniors. Industry certification and college credit are offered in many of the different career programs.

The UNMC High School Alliance is a partnership between the University Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) and 19 high schools in 10 school districts including the Omaha Public Schools. It offers unique and innovative health science classes to high school juniors and seniors on the UNMC campus.

The Zoo Partnership is a partnership between Henry Doorly Zoo, Papillion-LaVista Schools, and OPS to offer unique and innovative science classes to high school juniors and seniors at the Zoo campus.

OPS Career Education students have the opportunity to participate in work based learning opportunities for credit and compensation. Work based learning opportunities provide students with real world experience and opportunities in their Career Education Programs of Study. Students can explore career pathways, earn OPS credit, and network for potential careers.

Career Education – Student Activities and Organizations:
Career student organizations provide essential opportunities for students to develop and refine the skills required in their chosen occupational area. Student conferences, competitions, workshops, community service, and other activities make education more enjoyable and effective.

DECA an international association of high school and college students studying marketing, management and entrepreneurship in business, finance, hospitality/marketing sales and service.

FBLA (Future Business Leaders of America) brings business and education together in a positive working relationship through innovative leadership and career development programs.
FEA (Future Educators of America) supports young people interested in education-related careers.

FFA (The National FFA Organization, formerly Future Farmers of America) is dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth, and career success through agricultural education.
FCCLA (Family, Career and Community Leaders of America) is a career student organization for young students in Family and Consumer Sciences.

HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America) promotes career opportunities in health care to enhance the delivery of quality health care to all people.

SkillsUSA serves teachers and high school/college students who are preparing for careers in trade, technical, and skilled service occupations including health occupations.

The VEX Robotics Program offers students an exciting platform for learning about areas rich with career opportunities in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). Beyond science and engineering principles, a VEX Robotics project encourages teamwork, leadership, and problem solving among groups.

International Baccalaureate (IB) Programs are offered at Central High School and Lewis and Clark Middle Schools within OPS.

The IB Diploma Program is designed as an academically challenging and balanced program of education with final examinations that prepare students for success both at the university and life beyond.  The curriculum is designed to ensure a cohesive, comprehensive education for students no matter where they live in the world.  Students who complete this program are preparing not only for success in college but for success in life.  The IB Diploma program allows for student and school flexibility in choosing areas of academic interest for student research.

This is only a partial list of the opportunities available within OPS. In addition, many community organizations are offering innovative programs to assist students and families.
Please go to for a complete listing of programs available.

Omaha Public Schools