Whether your high schooler is still doing full-on remote learning, is 100% back in a school building or doing a hybrid of the two, a good laptop is going to be important for getting through the school year.

This list highlighting the best laptop for high school students is all about machines that provide reliable, everyday performance and long battery life but in sizes that can fit into an average backpack and at prices around or below $1,000. 

With more people learning and working from home though, the increased need for an inexpensive student laptop means models frequently come in and out of stock at retailers.

The greater demand also means third-party sellers are listing laptops for a little or a lot more than their regular price. For example, one of my favorite Chromebooks at the moment is the Lenovo Chromebook Duet, which is listed for $399 on Amazon — $99 over its $300 regular price. 

Laptops at very cheap cost and better quality

When shopping for a student laptop, my recommendation is to buy directly from the manufacturer or from a familiar, trusted retailer for the best prices and return or exchange policies. If you’re shopping on sites like Amazon or Walmart with third-party sellers, check to see if the laptop is being shipped and sold by the site. For more specific shopping help, you’ll want to check out our buying advice on getting the best cheap laptops.

It’s worth noting, too, that if your school uses Google Classroom, it does not mean you need a Chromebook. (Here are the differences between a laptop and a Chromebook.) Also, if your high schooler is doing their schoolwork from home, you may want to add on some peripherals like a wireless mouse or keyboard as well as an inexpensive external monitor so they’re more comfortable and have a larger display to see their work.  

The IdeaPad Flex 5 14 is a 14-inch two-in-one Windows laptop, letting you use it as a regular laptop as well as a tablet or tented for presentations. It also works well with the display in stand mode with the keyboard facing down on a desk or table so you can attach a keyboard and mouse to give you more of a desktop experience. 

It’s available with either the latest Intel Core i7 processor or the AMD Ryzen 5 4500U processor for $560 and $688, respectively. If you can afford the extra cost, the AMD is the better deal. Either way, you’re getting a well-built machine for the money that should last your student several years