The Scariest Movies Set In Schools

Voting Rules
Scary movies that are set in a school.

What is it about a scary school movie that appeals to movie goers? What is it about the thought of a killer psychopath on the hunt for human lives that makes our adrenaline go up and leaves us asking for more? This list features the absolute scariest movies set in a school, ranked by users and movie lovers as the absolute scariest.

Who doesn’t shudder (and laugh in between) at the thought of a ruthless, brutal killer messing with a bunch of high school students? And who doesn’t love the mystery of feeling like you can trust your closest friends, only to find that they are secretly planning on killing you? There are many, but what are the scariest movies set in a school?

This list has the scariest movies set in schools, including: Scream, Urban Legend, I Know What You Did Last Summer, Carrie, The Craft, and Faculty. Vote up your favorite scary school movie below, or add one you love that isn't already on the list.

  • A Nightmare on Elm Street
    Photo: A Nightmare on Elm Street / New Line Cinema / Public domain
    In the chilling horror classic A Nightmare on Elm Street, Nancy Thompson (Heather Langenkamp) finds herself tormented by a monstrous figure in her dreams. This spectral menace, known as Freddy Krueger (Robert Englund), wears a bladed glove and leaves a trail of terror in his wake. As teens in her town start dying mysteriously, Nancy realizes the peril is not confined to her nightmares. Directed by Wes Craven, this film weaves a web of psychological terror that blurs the lines between dream and reality. The movie was so impactful that it spawned a franchise of sequels, solidifying its place in horror cinema history.
    • Released: 1984
    • Directed by: Wes Craven

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  • Carrie Horror
    Video: YouTube
    2
    170 votes
    In the chilling horror flick Carrie, a high school girl named Carrie White (Sissy Spacek) grapples with her emerging telekinetic powers, under the oppressive reign of her fanatically religious mother, Margaret (Piper Laurie). A pariah at school, she's tormented by her peers and misunderstood at home. When a cruel prank at the prom triggers her abilities, the night descends into terror. Directed by Brian De Palma, this film is based on Stephen King's novel of the same name. Nominated for two Academy Awards, it remains a classic in the horror genre.
    • Released: 1976
    • Directed by: Brian De Palma

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  • Black Christmas
    Photo: Ambassador Films
    In the chilling film Black Christmas, a group of sorority sisters, including Jess (Olivia Hussey) and Barb (Margot Kidder), find themselves terrorized by unsettling phone calls during their holiday break. Unbeknownst to them, the calls are coming from inside the house. Directed by Bob Clark, this classic horror-thriller is known as one of the earliest slasher films. As the mystery unravels, tensions rise, leading to a suspenseful climax that will leave you on the edge of your seat. The movie's unique blend of horror and mystery has cemented its place in the annals of film history.
    • Released: 1974
    • Directed by: Bob Clark
  • Final Destination
    Video: YouTube
    In Final Destination, a gripping tale of survival and fate unfolds. The movie pivots around the central character Alex Browning (Devon Sawa), a high school student who experiences a premonition of a disastrous plane crash. When his vision becomes reality, he and several other survivors find themselves caught in an eerie sequence of life-threatening events. Directed by James Wong, this horror-thriller delves into the concept of death's design, creating a chilling atmosphere that keeps viewers on the edge of their seats. The film is known for its innovative plot and suspense-driven narrative, marking it as a standout within its genre.
    • Released: 2000
    • Directed by: James Wong

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  • The Craft
    Video: YouTube
    5
    117 votes
    In the mid-90s supernatural horror drama, The Craft, Sarah Bailey (Robin Tunney) arrives in Los Angeles as a new student where she finds kinship with three outcasts - Nancy Downs (Fairuza Balk), Bonnie Harper (Neve Campbell), and Rochelle Zimmerman (Rachel True). The quartet's shared fascination with witchcraft leads them to form their own coven. As they experiment with spells and rituals, they discover their newfound powers come with unsettling consequences. Directed by Andrew Fleming, this film explores the dark side of teenage rebellion and the dangers of unchecked power. Despite its youthful cast, The Craft manages to deliver a chilling narrative that resonates beyond its high-school setting.
    • Released: 1996
    • Directed by: Andrew Fleming

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  • Scream 2
    Video: YouTube
    6
    135 votes
    Scream 2, a sequel to the infamous horror film Scream, is a chilling thrill ride that keeps audiences on edge. Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell), survivor of the original Woodsboro murders, attempts to rebuild her life at Windsor College, only to find herself once again targeted by Ghostface (voiced by Roger L. Jackson). The movie also showcases Gale Weathers (Courteney Cox) and Dewey Riley (David Arquette), characters who return from the first installment, grappling with their past trauma while trying to unravel the new mystery. Directed by Wes Craven, this film is a blend of suspense, mystery and smart commentary on horror sequels, without forgetting its roots in slasher terror.
    • Released: 1997
    • Directed by: Wes Craven

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