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Newsweek - America's Best High Schools (Find Yours)


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The School of Science and Engineering Magnet in Dallas resembles most high schools these days: Legislature threatens huge budget cuts, teachers face pink slips and 62 percent of the students qualify for subsidized lunch. Amid these challenges, however, students work hard to earn their success, steering their school to the No. 1 spot on Newsweek's annual list of America's Best High Schools.

The magnet school's wide-ranging accomplishments helped earn the accolade, as the study broadened its metric measurements for success this year. In the past, the ranking of top schools focused on AP tests taken per graduate -- and that was it. This year, the new criteria for the 1,100 schools that supplied internal data included graduation rate, college matriculation rate, AP tests taken per graduate, average SAT/ACT scores, average AP/IB scores and AP courses offered per graduate.

Last year, the School of Science and Engineering Magnet's senior class of 86 students graduated and headed to college with offers of more than $9.7 million in scholarships, according to the school's website.

The magnet school tells Newsweek it seeks to maintain its successful system despite challenges.

"Our major goal is to continue with the standard of service we've provided for years and years," says Principal Jovan Wells.

In addition to study metrics, Newsweek also expanded its consulting board. This year, the study asked Teach For America, Open Education Solutions and a Stanford professor of education to help develop the criteria to measure a school's ability to prepare students for both college and life.

Besides the on-paper accomplishments and honors the School of Science and Engineering Magnet has received, Wells also attributes the School of Science and Engineering's success to its tight-knit environment.

School - City - State - Student/Teacher Ratio -Grad Rate - AP/IB Tests - College Bound % - Avg. SAT - NewsWeek Score

127StoneBridge AshburnVA26.9983.69716730.642

177Centreville CliftonVA29.5963.99216260.545

183Freedom South RidingVA14.51003.19615430.536

198Briar Woods AshburnVA26.9974.19015980.518

247Western Albemarle CrozetVA12.0952.88617520.447

263Princess Anne Virginia BeachVA22.0893.89116510.426

282Cosby MidlothianVA27.1982.09015370.391

384Blacksburg BlacksburgVA14.2942.08616930.263

64 Poolesville Poolesville MD 13.1 99 4.9 87 1828 0.935

91 Winston Churchill Potomac MD 13.5 98 4.4 85 1824 0.791

102 Thomas S. Wootton Rockville MD 13.7 98 4.2 85 1822 0.747

117 Walt Whitman Bethesda MD 13.4 97 4.1 82 1879 0.692

131 Eastern Technical Essex MD 16.1 99 2.7 93 1623 0.631

145 Bethesda-Chevy Chase Bethesda MD 14.4 96 5.3 77 1734 0.603

215 Walter Johnson Bethesda MD 12.4 96 4.6 75 1754 0.494

219 Hereford Parkton MD 26.1 98 2.3 91 1686 0.491

232 George Washington Carver Center for Arts and Technology Towson MD 26.2 100 2.5 88 1654 0.471

242 Richard Montgomery Rockville MD 13.0 91 5.4 73 1759 0.459

303 Liberty Eldersburg MD 18.4 99 1.5 91 1582 0.367

388 Pikesville Balto MD 12.0 98 1.6 90 1539 0.260

389 Huntingtown Huntingtown MD 17.0 95 2.6 89 1609 0.259

413 Towson Towson MD 18.7 93 3.2 76 1742 0.222

433 Loch Raven Baltimore MD 19.0 99 1.2 83 1573 0.194

442 Baltimore City College Baltimore MD 32.0 98 1.8 98 1370 0.172

446 Dulaney High Timonium MD 18.7 98 3.0 69 1672 0.170

468 Sherwood Sandy Spring MD 12.9 95 2.8 79 1616 0.135

469 Century Sykesville MD 20.0 98 1.6 86 1571 0.132

239 Benjamin Banneker Academic Washington DC 25.1 95 3.1 100 1556 0.464

269 School Without Walls Washington DC 13.0 99 3.4 93 1540 0.409

http://www.newsweek.com/feature/2011/americas-best-high-schools.html

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A quick glance shows that the report is ridiculously biased to schools that claim high % of college bound students.

Case in point.

Rank School

442 Baltimore City College Baltimore MD 32.0 98 1.8 98 1370 0.172

446 Dulaney High Timonium MD 18.7 98 3.0 69 1672 0.170

How on earth does school 446 finish behind school 442 when it has a 300 pt edge in SATs, nearly twice as many kids sit for the ACTs, and a teacher student ratio of nearly half?

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There's absolutely no excuse for them not to have TJ as #1 (i didnt go there but still know that it is the best school in the country) and at least 5-10 FFX County schools in this list

They put a *Dallas* magnet school at the top

I see how it is, Newsweek.

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There's absolutely no excuse for them not to have TJ as #1 (i didnt go there but still know that it is the best school in the country) and at least 5-10 FFX County schools in this list

This.

There is a reason UVA is called Jefferson south.

Also, I could be wrong, but I believe rapper Kool Kieth attended School for the Talented and Gifted Magnet

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tangent, but it always pissed me off that the government supported super schools got better food than the rest of the public school students. I mean yeah, maybe they should have more of the educational resources cause they are more likely to use them (weak argument imo), but why better food?

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This list is terrible. How they dont have every most Fairfax and Howard Counties on this list is beyond me. 2 counties known for having the best academics in the nation.

Fairfax and Arlington probably have the best systems in the area and are two of the best in the nation. I've never heard anyone say they have THE best, that's a mass exaggeration.

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There are about a dozen public high schools in San Francisco. The best of them is Lowell, the oldest public high school west of the Mississippi. You have to test in and have top grades in middle school to attend. Basically, every academically oriented kid in the entire City tries to get into Lowell, and only goes somewhere else if they fail to get in. These are not only privileged suburban kids, but kids from every corner of the City, rich, poor, inbetween. By any measure, it is the best performing urban high school in California.

So, Lowell is nowhere to be found on this ranking list, but San Francisco's George Washington High School IS on the list. The average SAT at Lowell is 375 points higher than the average SAT at Washington. The number of AP courses taken at Lowell is multiples of the number taken at Washington. 99 percent of graduates from Lowell attend college, 91 percent of greaduates from Washington attend college.

Something is wrong here.

---------- Post added June-22nd-2011 at 11:37 AM ----------

Fairfax and Arlington probably have the best systems in the area and are two of the best in the nation. I've never heard anyone say they have THE best, that's a mass exaggeration.

Montgomery County too, maybe even more so.

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