Get to Know the Ladue School District

An Exceptional District

  • The Ladue School District comprises all or part of 10 self-governed communities in St. Louis County, and encompasses approximately 19 square miles with a population of more than 27,000 residents. Currently, only 23% of district residents have students currently attending at least one of our schools.
  • The Ladue School District is comprised of an early childhood center, four K-4 elementary schools, a Fifth Grade Center, a middle school and a high school. More than 4,000 students attend our schools, and approximately 900 students receive services through the Ladue Early Childhood Center through programs such as Parents As Teachers, Parents and Children Together and preschool classes.
  • The student body is socio-economically diverse with a graduation rate consistently exceeding 90 percent with 86% of 2021 graduates continuing on to college.
  • The parents and community residents are highly active in the schools and serve as members of Board of Education advisory committees, strategic planning initiatives, task forces and parent organizations.
  • The district experienced a rapid enrollment increase beginning in 2003, with enrollment increasing 23% (nearly 750 students) over the next ten years and exceeding 4,000 students for the first time since 1978 in the 2013-14 school year. On the official 2021 Missouri “Count Day,” the district’s total enrollment was 4,167.
  • The district is enriched by a diverse student population: 55.58% White, 16.97% Asian, 14.5% Black, 7.76% Multiracial, 4.95% Hispanic, and 0.22% American Indian or Alaska Native.
  • For the 2021-22 school year, the district established an operating budget of $67.6 million, with anticipated revenue of $69.8 million. Of total district revenue, 92 percent is derived from local sources, the majority of which comes from property taxes.
  • A complete renovation of Ladue Horton Watkins High School (LHWHS) concluded in 2018, with final touches put on the Nielson Gym and new stadium complex over the summer, allowing high school teams to play under the lights on their home field for the first time in school history. The project was funded through an $85.1 million bond referendum passed in April 2016.
  • During the summer of 2019, safety and security features were updated and major building infrastructure systems were improved at the Fifth Grade Center.

The demographics of the Ladue School are often surprising to those who are not in our schools on a regular basis.  The following information will help you get to know us better.

Attendance & Graduation

Student Attendance Days: 175 days (2021)
Graduation Rate: 97.2% (Class of 2021)
Graduates attending a 2- or 4-year college/university – 86% (Class of 2021)

Financial Information (2021)

Operating Budget: $67,557,414 million (92% of revenues derived from local sources)
2021 Per Pupil Expenditure: $14,431.39
Students Eligible for Free & Reduced Lunch: 9.88%
Teacher Salary Range: $46,368-$111,360
Average Teacher Salary: $74,465
Percentage of Total Operating Budget for Salaries & Benefits: 75%
Assessed Valuation (as of Dec. 31, 2020): $1,891,621,450

2021-22 Tax Rates:

$2.75 (residential)
$2.9942 (commercial)
$2.75 (agricultural)
$3.24 (personal property)

Debt Service: $0.86

Teachers & Classrooms (2021-22)

Full-Time Classroom Teachers: 311
Teachers with 10 or More Years of Experience: 189
Teachers with Advanced Degrees (including administrators): 345
Student to Certified Staff (K-12): 12:1
Student to Administrator Staff (K-12): 160:1

ACT Test Scores (Class of 2021)

% Tested Composite English Math Reading Science
Ladue 75% 27.2 26.6 25.1 26.1 25.7
Missouri 20.4 20.3 20.2 21.3 20.8
National 20.7 20.1 20.4 21.2 20.6

SAT Test Scores (Class of 2021)

Critical Reading/Writing Mean Math Mean
Ladue 660 670
Missouri 605 610
National 530 520


Distinctions & Recognitions

The Ladue School District is widely recognized as one of the premier public school districts in the nation, whether it be for the caliber of the teaching, the hard work and character of our students and staff, or for transparent and conscientious district management.

National District and Schools of Character

The Ladue School District has been named a National District of Character (2019), along with four of its schools being named National Schools of Character by The Character Education Partnership. The Character Education Partnership is a national advocate and leader for the character education movement. The National Schools of Character program recognizes schools that have demonstrated the use of character education and development to drive a positive impact on academics, student behavior, and school climate.
      • Spoede Elementary School (2020)
      • Ladue Early Childhood Center (2019)
      • Ladue Middle School (2019 and 2014)
      • Reed Elementary School (2018)
Missouri District and Schools of Character
The following have earned distinction as Missouri Schools of Character. The program is conducted by CHARACTERplus, a division of Cooperating School Districts, and is the most rigorous award process in the field of character education in Missouri.
      • Ladue School District (2019)
      • Ladue Early Childhood Center (2019)
      • Ladue Middle School (2018 and 2012)
      • Old Bonhomme Elementary School (2013)
      • Spoede Elementary School (2011)
Gold Star Schools
      • Old Bonhomme Elementary School (2004-05 and 1991-92)
      • Conway Elementary School (2006-07 and 2002-03)
      • Reed Elementary School (2004-05)
Blue Ribbon Schools
      • Conway Elementary School (2007-08)
      • Ladue Horton Watkins High School (1982-83)
      • Ladue Middle School (East Ladue Jr. High School) (2015-16 and 1983-84)
      • Spoede Elementary School (1987-88)
      • Old Bonhomme Elementary School (2004-05 and 1991-92)
  • The district has earned the prestigious “Distinction in Performance” Award from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) each year the award has been given since 2001.
  • For the past 20 years, the National Merit Program has recognized approximately 10 percent of the members of each graduating class as a finalist, semifinalist or commended student.
  • The district holds a AAA rating from Standard and Poor’s and is one of the few public school districts in Missouri, and one of less than 100 in the nation, to hold this designation.
  • In 2014, 2016 and 2019, the Ladue School District was recognized as one of St. Louis’ Top Workplaces based on the results of an employee survey conducted by Workplace Dynamics.

For more information about the district’s recognitions, or to peruse recent initiatives and historic milestones, please visit the District History page.

Annual Report

The Annual Report for the Ladue School District is a resource that offers an overview of the district’s programs and achievements to all of our stakeholders. It is a way of showing accountability and transparency to the families and residents who support our schools.

State law (Section 160.522) requires the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to publish an annual “report card” about each school district, each school building, and each charter school. All of the information provided in the report is compiled from data our district reports to the Department. At the website below, search for “Ladue 096106” under “Choose District or Charter.”

View the Annual Report

DESE Annual Report Image