About Madison City Schools
Empowering All Students For Global Success.
The Mission of the Madison City School District is to create a safe, supportive, and equitable school environment where all students are inspired to meet their fullest potential academically, emotionally and socially.
Madison City Schools is in the thriving suburb of Madison just west of Huntsville, AL, serving students from both Madison and Triana. The 2022 State Department of Education report cards gave the District and all schools an A. Madison City Schools was one of only five districts out of 137 school systems statewide to receive all A's.
MCS is the 12th largest school district in Alabama with 2023 enrollment approximately 12,600 students spread across two 9-12 high schools, three 6-8 middle schools, seven K-5 elementary schools, RISE Academy alternative school on the campus of James Clemens High School, and a Pre-K program on the campus of Rainbow Elementary. The third middle school just opened in 2023, a larger, stand-alone PreK Center is in the works, and the Board of Education recently purchased the land to build an eighth elementary school within the next several years. Enrollment has been steadily growing 300-400 students per year.
The 2020 Census ranked Madison as Alabama’s 10th largest city with 56,933 residents, but 2023 updates put its population at 60,342. Neighboring Huntsville is now the state’s largest city at 215,006 residents, followed by Birmingham, Montgomery, and Mobile.
The City of Madison experienced tremendous growth from the 1980s to early 2000s from families flocking here to work largely in the expanding defense, aerospace, and technology sectors. Residents are drawn to Madison by its high quality of life factors led by a school district that does not settle for anything less than best.
The Madison City Schools system was created in 1998 after separating from the Madison County School System and including neighboring Triana in the school district. The split was driven by high expectations and demands within the community to take education to a higher level. The citizens willingly taxed themselves to build the framework. They reaffirmed that trust with several tax renewals and continuously support the schools through active Parent Teacher Associations (PTAs), booster clubs, volunteerism, and strong business and industry partnerships throughout the community.
Public confidence in Madison City Schools was further bolstered with voter approval of a substantial property tax increase (12 mils) for schools in September 2019, which passed by a 70 percent margin in both Madison and Triana, for new schools and quality instruction. Triana is served by Madison City Schools and has equally been a strong partner to MCS.
Madison’s top performing school system, family-friendly charm, and concentration of well-educated professionals have positioned it as one of Alabama’s and the South’s most desired places to live. The school district continuously rates at or near the top of many school rankings in academics, athletics, arts, and other school/student performance measures. In just 23 years as a school system, Madison City Schools has emerged as a powerhouse in Alabama. It consistently earned an A as a district and at every school on state-issued report cards, and is regularly rated by NICHE as the best or second best district out of 138 public school systems statewide. In just 24 years, Some 62 percent of the 2023 seniors (634) were offered $69 million in scholarships, with approximately $26.6 million accepted for an average of $42,000.
An impressive 17 percent scored a 30 or higher on their ACT.
Individual schools in Madison also rank admirably - all placing in the top 1 or 2 percentile consistently in NICHE and in annual U.S. News and World Report evaluations of hundreds of schools statewide. One of the hallmarks of Madison City Schools is ensuring that all schools perform at a high level so that, no matter where one lives, they will attend a quality school. Continuous high growth requires frequent rezoning as populations shift and new schools are built. Keeping schools socioeconomically balanced is a key focus in rezonings.
The Madison City Board of Education is unique in that its members are appointed by the City Council to represent the residents of Madison at-large. That means each individual school board member is charged with making decisions in the best interest of all Madison City schools and students, not just those of a particular geographic zone.
Each board member is appointed to staggered five-year terms. The Board hires the Superintendent, Chief Financial Officer, and chooses Board Legal Counsel, with all other decisions following superintendent recommendations subject to board approval.
Madison City Schools approved a $129 million 2022-2023 operating budget with 1,416 full-time employees. Test scores on national standardized tests are above the national average at all schools. It is an affluent suburban community, with residents working in highly technical jobs with companies such as SCI, FBI, Intergraph, Boeing, as well as the U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command and NASA. Over 69% of adults in Madison hold Bachelor's or advanced degrees. The school population is diverse with over 59 different languages represented in the district. Minorities account for approximately one third of the student population, and twenty six percent of students overall come from households with incomes at or below the poverty level. Our Special Education program remains dedicated to serving 1,400 students, ages 3-21, with a wide range of disabilities.