U.S. News & World Report Announces the 2017 Best High Schools
Washington, D.C. – U.S. News & World Report, the global authority in education rankings, today announced the 2017 Best High Schools. The rankings identify the top-performing public high schools at the national and state level and include published data on more than 22,000 schools.
Public schools in Arizona make a strong showing in the national rankings, taking four of the top five spots. For the first time, BASIS Scottsdale comes in at No. 1 in the national rankings, followed by BASIS Tucson North at No. 2 and BASIS Oro Valley at No. 3. High Technology High School in New Jersey is the nation's Best STEM School for the third year in a row. U.S. News also released new Best Charter Schools, Best Magnet Schools and individual statewide rankings.
The U.S. News rankings highlight public schools that best serve all of their students, including disadvantaged populations. Overall, the rankings focus on student outcomes with an emphasis on graduation rates and state proficiency tests. Students at the 6,041 schools that receive national recognition from U.S. News graduate at rates that are 15 percent higher, on average, than students at schools nationwide that are not ranked.
"It is critical that students graduate from high school to put them on a successful path to college and a career," said Anita Narayan, managing editor of Education at U.S. News. "We encourage parents to use the data included in the 2017 Best High Schools rankings to help make informed decisions about their children's education."
New this year, U.S. News made a change in the way it factors Advanced Placement® exams as part of the tiebreaker in the methodology to better reflect schools that are preparing their students for college. The measure includes giving more weight to schools where students participate – and pass – a variety of college-level courses and exams.
"Research has shown that students exposed to a more diverse high school curriculum are better equipped for college success," said Robert Morse, chief data strategist at U.S. News. "With this new tiebreaker measure, U.S. News is rewarding schools that make an effort to challenge their students in a broad range of subjects."
U.S. News recognizes high schools with gold, silver and bronze medals, with gold medals indicating the greatest level of college readiness. Maryland, Florida and California are the states with the highest percentage of eligible schools that received gold and silver medals. A state-by-state breakdown is available here.
The Best High Schools rankings, available exclusively on usnews.com, feature data on a number of factors, including enrollment, graduation rates, diversity, participation in free and reduced-price lunch programs, and the results of state assessments and AP®.
U.S. News worked with RTI International, a global research firm, to implement the comprehensive rankings methodology.