Top 35 Best Anime About High School (Series & Movies)This post may contain affiliate links. If you buy something we may get a small commission at no extra cost to you. (Learn more).
To be honest, I didn’t really like high school. I feel like most people didn’t.
However, you can’t dispute the fact that it brought us some stellar anime.
I don’t know what it is about high school that makes it the perfect setting for most shows. But it’s a hit setting in some great anime.
Here we’ll dive into some of the best anime about high school, or to be precise, shows where high school is the setting. Because as you’ll see a lot of these shows seem to focus on everything but the school itself.
35. Tonari no Seki-kun: The Master of Killing Time
If you like slacking off in school and generally dozing off mid-lecture, this anime is bound to be extremely relatable.
It’s all about the titular Seki-kun, a guy who’s ready to do just about anything other than listening to his teachers.
And since a classroom isn’t exactly the most riveting place to be, he has to get creative.
Will he invent a completely new game, make some domino patterns, roleplay? Who knows. The only thing that’s certain is the girl next to him will try to stop him, ultimately fail, and somehow get blamed for slacking off.
34. Daily Lives of High School Boys
High school is even in the name here, so you already know this show fits like a glove.
The beauty of this anime is that what you get in the title, is really what you get in the show itself.
There’s no magic or apocalypse. No 10-way love triangles and no over the top antics.
It’s just a bunch of boys, and sometimes girls, chilling out, having fun, and being somewhat hormonal. And I can guarantee that if you were the type who played around with sticks when you were younger, this show is going to be a blast from the past.
33. The Misfit of Demon King Academy
As far as magic high schools are concerned, this one is by far the most out there.
Not so much in terms of originality, but more so the levels of OP-ness (don’t read that out loud) when it comes to the main character.
The man literally beats enemies by blinking at them. Of course, you have his surrounding entourage of girls who all look up to him and even sing songs about how great he is. That’s fun too.
The show is stupidly fun, and should not be taken seriously… but rather just enjoyed for the pure insanity it portrays.
32. Assassination Classroom
I love how the show that’s all about assassinations and a yellow squid-looking monster blowing up the Earth, is somehow the most school-related one plot-wise.
I mean, you really see these kids advance academically. And the hurdles they must get over in order to achieve their goals are clear.
In between lots of attempted murders, that is.
The show is ironically upbeat, thanks in large to Koro-sensei: the best teacher character I have seen in a while.
It has quite a few funny scenes, plus an ending that I can only describe as a masterpiece.
31. Asobi Asobase
In Asobi Asobase there’s one goal and one goal only: pass the time and have some fun.
The show is about three girls and how they spend time in their Pastime Club.
They’re all beyond quirky.
With Kasumi being a quiet girl who goes mental when disturbed, Olivia a literal troll, and Hanako is the collection of all chaotic energy that this plane of existence has ever seen. I’m not really even kidding, whoever wrote Hanako’s lines must have had the time of their life.
It’s a comedy, and a great one at that. And has not seen a dull moment yet.
You wouldn’t usually associate anthropomorphic animals and high school. But there’s a first time for everything.
Beastars tackles one main problem: the relationship between predators and prey.
It has quite an interesting dynamic as the characters are presented being anything but typical, with a tall dandere wolf and a daddy issues rabbit in the main spotlight.
It’s all set in a high school. So you get the usual popular kid and jock archetypes, but in a very refined and nice way.
Personally, I really recommend giving it a watch.
29. Boku no Hero Academia
Virtually every occupation nowadays has its designated high school. So I guess it’s no surprise that a “hero school” is a thing.
I’m sure you’ve seen and heard about the show countless times. It has been riding the hype train for quite a while.
We get to watch our main cast learn how to be heroes, what it means to be a hero, how to optimize their quirks, and in the case of Bakugo, how to communicate without blowing out my eardrums.
The fights are top tier, the soundtrack amazing, and there have only been a few filler episodes for now. So why not give it a watch? It’s gotta be popular for a reason.
28. Haganai (I Don’t Have Many Friends)
As the title might suggest, this show is all about making friends.
We have a cast of characters that all feel alienated from the school in one way or another. And they find their place in the Neighbour’s Club.
A single look at the cover photo of the show will confirm what you are already suspecting: a single male lead and lots of females.
It’s not as cheesy as these types of shows can sometimes get, really. The characters are pretty well written and the atmosphere is quite warm and fun.
The school in Kakegurui has both the stupidest and most brilliant schooling system I have ever seen.
On one side of the coin, you have a completely normal private school. It has students that come from rich parents hitting those books.
On the other side of the coin is Las Vegas on steroids.
Everything is about gambling, and the stakes get ridiculous to the point of students being slaves to other students. Everyone is also extremely into it. Like really into it.
So I don’t recommend watching this one without headphones.
26. Kill la Kill
The funniest way I can describe this show is: elite academy fighting ring where partial nudity gives you power.
I’m sure you’ve all heard of the show by now. Or at least seen the protagonist Ryuuko in one way or the other (*wink wink*).
We follow her as she strives to reach the very top of an elite academy through sheer force, and uncover the truth behind her father’s death.
The fights are quite good, the humor excellent, the realistic GPAs of those students are terrible, and the characters (especially Mako) are incredibly fun.
25. Kokoro Connect
High School is awkward enough as it is.
But in the world of Kokoro Connect it’s a literal nightmare for every introvert ever.
You see, in the show we have a group of people that just chill out in the club room until a mysterious spirit/creature starts messing with their lives.
First they start randomly switching bodies. Then they randomly read each other’s minds, and then they can’t control their impulses.
As a watching experience it’s pretty fun. But were that ever to happen in real life, I would be in the deepest despair.
24. Scum’s Wish
Now as far as high school romances go, this is definitely one of the sadder shows.
That’s because there’s no perfect love story, harem, or club shenanigans.
There are attempts at love. But they are far from easy or straightforward.
So if you like your romance shows with a hint of emotional masochism then this show might just be up your alley.
I mean just look at that title. Definitely not a pinch of optimism there.
23. ORESUKI Are you the only one who loves me?
This anime has a very strong Reddit vibe. This is because the male lead is the entire nice guy subreddit, only with a bit less profanity.
He tries to put on the act of being a genuinely nice person so that he could live that high school harem life.
However, it doesn’t really work out for him. Because stupid bench-kun keeps interfering.
So he starts dropping the mask little by little, while his former friends get acquainted with the “real him” and Sumeriko pulls the strings like a damn puppet master.
22. Plastic Neesan
If you want the anime equivalent of snorting a line of coke, then this is the show for you.
It’s really short. Only about 30 minutes for the whole ordeal.
But it’s an absurd comedy so what even is pacing? Everything is happening constantly, you get no warnings as to when the jokes are going to land, and there are so many WFT moments that you give up on the social norm entirely.
This is how to best enjoy it: just take a deep dive into madness while a man wearing a bra humps the air.
Also, the characters are in school or something? I don’t know, I’m still under the influence.
21. The Disastrous Life of Saiki K.
Just imagine Mob Psycho 100, but the protagonist is really tired of everyone and wants to be left alone. That is pretty much Saiki K. as a show.
Saiki has seemingly unlimited powers. But instead of curing cancer or fighting crime, he goes to school, helps a cat find a date, talks with some ghosts, and so on.
If you haven’t picked up on the subtle cues, it’s a comedy. And a very absurd one at that.
The best sales pitch I can give you is that one character has the same type of chaotic energy as Nappa from Dragon Ball Z Abridged.
20. Sakamoto Desu ga?
I have heard the phrase “perfect being” so many times in anime. Cell especially comes to mind.
But who knew that there’s a perfect being, and that he’s currently in high school? His name is Sakamoto and he’s so perfect that even his bullies can’t help but fall in love with the man.
It’s like he knows the answer to every question, and he always has to do it in the most extravagant way possible.
Putting out a fire? Just jump side to side to create a breeze.
Someone is bullying your friend? Fend them off with some condiments and straws. You get the gist.
19. The Girl Who Leapt Through Time
I love it when the title summarizes the plot for me.
So our protagonist, Makoto, gets the ability to leap through time. How does she use said power?
Mostly to avoid people who want to ask her out initially.
But if you have ever seen a movie or series with a time travel theme, you already know that consequences are bound to catch up sooner or later. It’s a movie, so it can’t be that much later.
And when they do catch up, well… it becomes something much more than just a girl avoiding a boy, I can tell you that much.
If you love your romance anime then you have undoubtedly seen (or at least heard of) this show.
The setup is pretty simple: four people are in a weird love square while the fifth person kind of judges them from the side and gives them hints on how to pass a certain level.
Will the square change?
Will tragedy hit and make someone pull an Eminem?
Are there going to be scenes that literally make you melt from the inside and cry on the outside?
Find out next time on… just watch the show.
17. WataMote: No Matter How I Look At It, It’s You Guys’ Fault I’m Unpopular!
I know I used the phrase “emotional masochism” when describing Scum’s Wish, but it pales in comparison to WataMote.
There’s only one way to truly describe the feeling invoked by watching this show: it’s like watching a cringe compilation.
It’s all about a girl who’s as awkward as they come. And not the dandere cutesy awkward, oh no no.
The socially inept, bitter and naïve type of awkward.
So if you yourself were cringe in high school and want to hurt yourself emotionally, give it a watch.
16. Your Name
High school definitely doesn’t take center stage in this movie.
But since the characters are of that age and school is used to introduce the characters and their friends, I think it’s still worth putting on here.
Your Name is a story of romance that transcends place and time.
That might sound like hyperbole, but trust me, it is very much true.
It has some of the most beautiful visuals I have seen in recent anime, and an even better soundtrack. So if you want a surreal experience this is definitely the place to go.
Regret is quite the tricky thing, isn’t it?
Knowing that you could have done something or saved someone, but didn’t, for whatever reason. That’s quite the question in Orange.
A girl receives a message from her future self, stating that she has to save her new classmate. With that you can already get a feel of the tone of the show.
It’s a rather uplifting story and really puts into perspective how much a person can affect those around them.
I feel like I’m going to get locked up for putting Shimoneta under “schools” but it is what it is.
In case you don’t know, the full title of the show is : “SHIMONETA: A Boring World Where the Concept of Dirty Jokes Doesn’t Exist”
And that pretty much sums it up.
In this anti-hormone world we follow a certain group of students who are trying to bring ecchi back into the world. And because of the world they live in, that’s pretty much illegal.
So you’re literally watching porn terrorists throw panties around. It’s a unique experience, let’s just say that.
13. The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya
Joan Osborne asked the age-old question “what if God was one of us?”
But it turns out a better question would have been “what if God went to the same school as me?”, with adlibs that say “and she was kind of a tsundere”.
So yeah, the titular Haruhi is basically a god. But she doesn’t know it.
Her friends, however, are very much aware of this fact. And are trying really hard not to get their universe blown up.
It sounds like a high-stakes action show. But it is really a high school slice of life with some chaos thrown into the mix.
12. Fruits Basket
Fruits Basket could be set just about anywhere and I would still watch it, just for the main duo.
To summarize the plot, the girl ends up homeless after a tragedy. Ends up living with her school’s popular rich boy. And it turns out his family turns into their respective zodiac sign when hugged.
Adorable chemistry between the girl and said popular boy ensues. In general, that’s all you need to know to get started here.
Now go my children, and watch a grumpy cat man fall in love with a girl who’s the character equivalent of sunshine.
I mean, technically this falls under the category of high school, technically.
Okay, I have to spoil the plot in order to explain why I wrote technically twice.
In short, we see a group of girls living their best life at school: having fun, slacking off, the usual.
However it quickly turns out that their school life is just an illusion. A coping mechanism for the absolute anarchy going on in the real world, which is a zombie apocalypse.
You can imagine how hard this show hits the psychological note.
Now this anime is more along the “normal high school” format.
You get a group of friends and a club room, that’s it.
However, where this show excels is precisely in finding the extra in the ordinary.
You see, the main shtick is that of mystery, most notably the mystery surrounding their very own club room.
But even beyond that, just those little questions that might appear in everyday life. The show is relaxing as all hell to watch, and it can really get your creative juices flowing!
9. A Silent Voice
You know what they say: karma is a female dog.
In this absolute masterpiece of a movie we follow a boy and the regret he carries around on his shoulders.
When he was young, he and some other classmates pick on a girl who’s deaf.
This eventually gets to the principle and the boy gets in trouble. Not only that, but he also gets ostracized, feeling the same pain that girl felt.
So he decides to find this girl and make amends for what he had so foolishly done. It’s a really touching story, and some tissues probably should be handy.
8. The Anthem of the Heart
Oh, did the last entry not fulfill your desire for internal warmth? You want some more?
Well here you go. The Anthem of the Heart is a fairy tale-like story of a girl who loses the ability to speak after a slipup ends her parents’ marriage.
However, even with this predisposition, she’s somehow chosen to sing in her high school’s musical.
No, not that one.
She wants to decline, but then hears the voice of God himself, that is to say Sakagami. Now she feels like she should sing, hmmm.
Screw it, *we’re all in this together*…
7. My Love Story!!
Keeping the romantic streak going we have My Love Story.
To understand this anime you just have to understand the main character, Takeo.
He’s a gentle giant who every man looks up to for his courage and heart of gold.
However, he isn’t much of a looker. So females are hardly as impressed.
In fact, they’re too busy sizing up his playboy friend Makoto.
But this wouldn’t be much of a love story unless a female finally understood Takeo’s kindness and looked past his physical appearance. You know, that whole thing.
Lots of heartwarming situations are to come. Takeo could teach Jesus about morality, and I love this show.
6. Tanaka-kun is Always Listless
If you’re currently reading this article instead of doing your homework, cleaning the house, or running away from the robber who just entered your house, you’re bound to relate to Tanaka.
The premise of the entire show is that Tanaka just cannot be bothered to do things, no matter what it is.
Especially if it’s something he wants out of.
The man just wants to chill at home, probably listen to lo-fi or something.
I’m honestly surprised he has the discipline to even attend school.
5. My Little Monster
She was a nerd, he was a delinquent.
Besides reading like a Tumblr post, this is the shortened synopsis of the show.
Shizuku(the female lead) only really cares about grades and has as much understanding for people as Siri.
Haru(our male lead) has the temper of a chihuahua and stopped going to school.
They meet and form the most unlikely friendship, where neither has any idea what’s going on. But some butterflies are definitely traveling over to the tummy area.
4. Kiss Him, Not Me!
You heard it here first folks, get those lips away from me and towards these studs!
What does this all mean?
Well, a girl goes through a glow up. Because she literally starved herself in mourning for an anime character, and now has lots of eyes on here.
The problem is she’s more interested in BL than she is in the boys themselves.
So she might have tried to get the boys together while they were trying to get with her. The title makes a lot more sense now, doesn’t it?
I feel like this list was too positive, with all the romances and comedies. So I might as well throw one horror into the mix.
I’m going to be vague here as the mystery is a key part of the series.
A boy transfers to a school and sees that everyone is acting weird, especially in regards to a certain eye-patched girl.
Before he realizes what hit him, tragedy starts erupting as people start dying in every way possible.
He has to crack the mystery of this classroom, of this town, so that the tragedies can finally be put to an end.
The male lead of Clannad(Tomoya) is just one of those characters that can’t resist the urge to help every female lead in the show.
He starts off with Nagisa, a girl that yells names of food from time to time, and wants to revive the drama club, to somehow be involved in five different lives.
It sounds like I’m complaining, but I am really not. Because man is this writing good, and the tears real.
And just when you think you can handle it, you move onto Clannad: After Story. And you are never truly the same after that.
1. High School DxD
Since you’ve made it this far you deserve some eye candy.
Plot synopsis: a guy gets killed by one demon and then resurrected by another demon that goes to his school. And he’s now her slave.
He’s a pervert and she is, um… very upfront.
There’s a lot of chest, I mean chess, as that’s their main way to battle and show who is breast, I mean best.
OK all jokes aside it’s as pure ecchi as you can get, with some solid battle mixed in there. Definitely watch alone at first.