Most children in Garner attend schools in the Wake County Public School System, one of the nation's largest public school systems. Three Garner-area schools—Smith Elementary, East Garner Middle and Garner Magnet High—are accredited by the International Baccalaureate Program, an academically rigorous curriculum focused on preparing young people to become productive citizens in a global economy. Two new schools are opening in Garner in 2018, South Garner High and Bryan Road Elementary. Two other schools—Garner Magnet High and Vandora Springs Elementary—are being rebuilt in order to meet the needs of the community for many years to come.
There are 10 colleges and universities in the immediate area, including Duke, NC State, Meredith and UNC-Chapel Hill. Most of these institutions offer both day and evening classes that are open to full- and part-time students. These institutions include large research universities, private colleges and seminaries. Wake Technical Community College is just minutes from Garner and offers associate's degrees, continuing education courses and workforce training opportunities.