Who We Are
Bioscience High School has evolved from an ambitious STEM public magnet high school in 2006 to a National Blue Ribbon School today. Years of intentional planning, research and focused dialogue, and revision with community members, post-secondary institutions and leaders from business and industry have contributed to its multifaceted mission statement which remains at its core in 2022-2023:
BHS provides a rigorous, collaborative, and relevant academic program emphasizing an innovative, problem-based curriculum that develops literacy in the sciences, mathematics, and the arts, thus cultivating critical thinkers, creative problem-solvers, and compassionate citizens, who are able to thrive in our increasingly complex and technological communities.
Bioscience High School educators believe that students learn best in diverse communities, where the exploration of complex challenges provides an opportunity for students to experience substantive learning and intellectual growth. Through inquiry and constructivist practices, students are empowered to demonstrate their learning, to continuously refine their understanding of the world through reflection, application and discourse. Supporting the core beliefs are four design principles, developed and articulated during the planning of the school but equally relevant today. Those design principles are: Multiple Perspectives, Scholarly Endeavors, Authentic Experiences, and Personalization.
Neda Boyce, Principal email@example.com
Counseling Staff: 602-764-5600
P. Kay Haggerty, Counselor firstname.lastname@example.org
Fast Facts 2022-2023
Average Class Size
Attendance Rate (2021)
Four-Year Graduation Rate (2021)
Students on Free & Reduced Lunch
Arizona Letter Grade
For the 2022-2023 academic year, all courses are taught on a two-semester calendar system. The entire teaching staff utilizes an evidenced-based/standards-focused grading system, with an emphasis on real world exposure to higher level concepts and curriculum, Socratic seminar discussions, and problem-based learning. In the 2020-2021 academic year, semester-long courses were taught virtually on a quarter system due to the pandemic, with students taking three block classes each nine weeks.
Bioscience's Unique Curricular Pathways
Bioscience's Unique Curricular Pathways
All Bioscience students now complete six year-long science* courses by graduation, starting with honors-level Methods of Scientific Inquiry, biology, and chemistry in their first two years. Bioscience juniors choose between two science pathways: engineering (*which is a CTE science course) or biomedical. Both junior science pathways are taught as a block. All seniors must complete a 200-hour capstone internship in an area of interest related to their future major or career. At each grade level, students have the opportunity to complete year-long, collaborative, 7-step “Better World Projects” (formerly called Sustainable Transformation Framework Projects) in which they identify a problem in the existing local or global community, actively research and meet with stakeholders, and propose and implement viable solutions. It should be noted that all Bioscience classes, even during the pandemic, maintained their rigorous, project-based, collaborative focus. While our classes are not designated as AP classes (except for AP Spanish Language), students are encouraged to take the AP exams for their courses in 11th and 12th grade. Prior to COVID-19, the number of students passing their AP exams increased. In 2019, one third of our 11-12th graders (62 students) took 80 AP exams with a 92% pass rate. Students took AP exams in Chemistry, Calculus AB and BC, Macroeconomics, Physics, Spanish Language and Culture, US Government and Politics, US History, Physics 2, and English Language and Composition.
28 separate year-long courses
Freshman courses are: English 1-2 Honors, Integrated Math 1-2 Honors, Methods of Scientific Inquiry 1-2 Honors (formerly Physics 1-2 Honors,) and Spanish 1-2 Honors or Spanish for Spanish Speakers 1-2 Honors. Due to district policy, Art 1-2 and Health & Fitness 1-2 courses may only be taken for regular credit rather than honors credit.
Sophomore honors courses are: English 3-4 Honors, Integrated Math 3-4 Honors, World History/Geography 1-2 Honors, Biology 1-2 Honors, Chemistry 1-2 Honors, and Spanish 3-4 Honors or Spanish for Spanish Speakers 3-4 Honors. All 10th-grade courses are taken at honors level.
Junior honors or AP weighted classes are: English 5-6 Honors, Integrated Math 5-6 (Pre-Calculus) Honors, U.S. History 1-2 Honors, Spanish 5-6 Honors or AP Spanish, and either: Anatomy & Physiology 1-2 Honors (dual credit course with Phoenix College) and Introduction to Epidemiology 1-2 Honors or Introduction to Engineering Design 1-2/Physics of Engineering 1-2. All 11th-grade courses are taken at honors/AP level.
Senior honors weighted classes are: English 7-8 Honors, Integrated Math 7-8 (Calculus) Honors, U.S. Government 1 Honors/Economics 1 Honors, College & Career Readiness, Bioscience Internship and Research Experience 1-2 Honors or CTE Engineering Internship 1-2 Honors, and either: Physics of Engineering 3-4 Honors, or Biology 3-4 Honors.
Dual Enrollment/Concurrent Enrollment
Students may simultaneously earn high school, community college, and university credit in approved Bioscience dual enrollment courses. These courses are taught by college-certified PXU/BHS teachers. This year, on the junior level, Spanish 101/102 and Biology 160 are offered for dual credit, and on the senior level, our Biology 3-4H course meets criteria for Biology 106.
Two or More
Honors marks are weighted 5 points for grade-point averages (GPA); the highest weighted GPA possible year-to-year tops out at around 4.888. Bioscience does not assign class rank. Grading is numerical; unweighted letter grade equivalents and grade points are as follows:
A = 100-90 (Exceed Expectations) = 4.0 grade points
B = 89-80 (Meet Expectations) = 3.0 grade points
C = 79-72 (Approach Expectations) = 2.0 grade points
D = 71-70 (Far Below Expectations) = 1.0 grade points
F = Below 70 (Failing) = 0.0 grade points
Current Grades – Class of 2022
Number of Students
Number of Students
District Graduation Requirements
2013 & on
Fine Art or CTE
**Juniors choosing the engineering pathway are considered to be in a PXU Career/Technical Education science course.
Many of the science courses required by BHS exceed PXU & state requirements and are counted as electives.
Standardized testing in the form of PSAT, ACT, and SAT is neither our focus nor our forte. Our faculty has chosen not to use curricular time for test prep, which directly impacts pacing and test completion. Nevertheless, Bioscience leads all PXU schools in state AZ Merit scores. Two students have been named NMSQT National Hispanic Recognition Scholars; 5 of our 70-member class earned ACT composite scores in the 30's with a high composite score of 35.
Scholarships, Awards, & Recognitions
Posse Scholars Program
PXU partners with the Posse Foundation as a member of its Virtual Posse. Each year, five Bioscience students can be nominated for the opportunity to be awarded full tuition scholarship with Virtual Posse schools – Case Western University, Davidson College, St. Olaf College, Centre College, Rhodes College, and Centre College. Five additional students may also be nominated for an Arts Posse to connect with North Carolina School for the Arts.
Phoenix Union High School District
Now celebrating its 126th year of existence, PXU is the largest high school district in the state with 11 comprehensive campuses and eight smaller magnet or micro-schools, including Bioscience. We are expanding in both the portfolio of schools offered and in student enrollment with over 28,000 students. PXU is the most ethnically diverse district in Arizona.
Awards and Recognitions
2022 – 1 Flinn Scholar, 1 Flinn Semi-Finalist, 2 DreamUS Scholars, 2 Dorrance Scholars, 4 Posse Scholars, Named #1 Niche Standout Schools in Arizona, Niche A+ ranking
2021 – 1 Flinn Scholar, 1 Flinn Semi-finalist, 2 Hispanic Recognition Scholars, 1 QuestBridge finalist, 5 DreamUS Scholars; named #1 Niche Standout Schools in Arizona, Niche A+ rating
2020 – National Blue Ribbon School (only AZ high school to be named), 1 Jack Kent Cooke Scholar, 5 QuestBridge Scholars (Princeton, Scripps, MIT, Notre Dame, Smith), 1 LEDA graduate (Princeton) & 2 Hispanic Recognition Scholars; US News National recognition – Silver ranking, Niche A+ ranking
2019 – Recognized as the “Top Small School in Arizona”; #1 ranking in NICHE Standout Schools in Arizona – A+ Overall Grade; 4 QuestBridge Scholars (MIT, Swarthmore, Lehigh, Tufts), 1 Dorrance Scholar; 1 LEDA Scholar; 1 Hispanic Recognition Scholar
2018 – 1 Gates Scholar, 2 Flinn Scholars, 3 QuestBridge Scholars (Stanford, Brown, Notre Dame), 1 Dorrance Scholar, 1 Doran Scholar; 1 LEDA Scholar; 1 Hispanic Recognition Scholar
2017 - #1 Ranking – Governor’s List of “Top AZ High Schools for Preparing Low Income Students for Higher Education,” 2 QuestBridge Scholars, US News national recognition – Bronze ranking; Niche – “A” Arizona rating; Great Schools 10/10 rating
2016- 1 Flinn Scholar, 2 QuestBridge Scholars,1 AXA Achievement Scholarship Natl’ Scholar, 5 QuestBridge College Prep Scholars, 2 Gates Millennium Finalists, Robotics Chairman’s Award recipient; US News National recognition – Bronze ranking; Niche – 7th Best High School in Arizona ranking
2015 - 2 QuestBridge Scholars, 1 National Merit Scholar, 4 Hispanic Recognition Scholars; Chairman’s Award recipient – Robotics/Nat’l qualifier; Niche 4th Best High School in Arizona ranking
2014 - 1 NMSQT Merit Semi-Finalist; 1 Hispanic Recognition Scholar
2014 - 1 Gates Millennium Scholar, 3 QuestBridge Scholars
2013 - Top 30 Most Architecturally Beautiful Campuses in the World
2012 - 3 Gates Millennium Scholars and 1 Flinn Scholar
2011 – 1 Gates Millennium Scholar, 1 Dorrance Scholar, & 1 National Merit Semi-finalist
College Acceptance - 2018-2022
In all, the Classes of 2018-2022 were accepted to over 60 universities, colleges, and honors programs across North America.
including: Allegheny College, Amherst College, American University, Arizona State University, ASU - Barrett Honors College, Brandeis University, Bowdoin College, Brown University, Bryn Mawr College, Carleton College, Case Western Reserve University, Claremont-McKenna College, Colby College, Colgate University, Columbia University, Cornell University, Dartmouth University, Davidson College, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Franklin & Marshall College, Grand Canyon University, Grinnell College, Hamilton College, Hampshire College, Harvey Mudd College, Hawaii Pacific University, Hope College, Howard University, Johns Hopkins University, Lafayette College, Lewis & Clark College, Lehigh University, Macalester College, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Middlebury College, Morehouse College, Northern Arizona University, Oberlin College, Occidental College, Ohio Wesleyan University, Pitzer College, Prescott College, Purdue University, Reed College, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Scripps College, Smith College, St. Olaf College, Swarthmore College, Stanford University, Trinity College, Tufts University, University of Arizona, UA Franke Honors Program, University of California-Berkeley, University of California-San Diego, University of California-Santa Barbara, University of Denver, University of New Mexico, University of Puget Sound, University of Rochester, Vassar College, Vanderbilt University, Wabash College, Wake Forest University, Wellesley College, Wesleyan University, Willamette University, Williams College, and Yale University.
Post-secondary Plans – Class of 2021
Graduates directly entering 4-yr. post-secondary education - 70%
Graduates directly entering 2-yr. community college – 20%
Graduates directly entering military service: 2%
2021-2022 $16,948,772 2016-2017 $10,610,885
2020-2021 $12,629,662 2015-2016 $4,849,256
2019-2020 $19,625,056 2014-2015 $6,082,148
2018-2019 $10,702,533 2013-2014 $5,738,260
2017-2018 $18,704,054 2012-2013 $3,861,540