North Carolina Earns Top Marks in Education


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U.S. News & World Report has released their 2016 Best High Schools list, and 15 Triangle area schools were included.

Working with Research Triangle Park-based RTI (Research Triangle Institute) International, U.S. News collected and analyzed school data based on four critera: 1. the performance of all students on state assessments in reading and mathematics; 2. the performance of disadvantaged student subgroups on these assessments; 3. the school’s graduation rate; and 4. the rates at which high school students participate in and perform well on Advanced Placement ® (AP) and International Baccalaureate (IB) tests.

The rankings include data on more than 21,500 public high schools. Across the country, public high schools were ranked and awarded as follows: Gold Medal – 2.5%; Silver Medal, 10.9%, Bronze Medal, 17.8%, and no medal, 68.8%.  Across the country, 6,218 schools received medals.

Here’s a breakdown of what the medals indicate:

  • Gold — Top 500 schools based on highest college readiness
  • Silver — High-performing schools with lower college readiness
  • Bronze — High-performing schools based on state exam performance, listed alphabetically

Raleigh Charter High School, the No. 2 North Carolina school on the list, received a Gold Medal, ranking 37th nationally among all schools and 13th nationally among charter schools.

Five other Triangle schools also earned Gold Medals:

  • Woods Charter School in Chatham County was No. 145
  • East Chapel Hill High School was No. 211
  • Carrboro High School was No. 288
  • Green Hope High School in Cary was No. 336
  • Durham School of the Arts was No. 358

Three Triangle schools received Silver Medals:

  • Franklin Academy in Wake Forest was No. 1,042
  • City of Medicine Academy in Durham was No. 1,431
  • Jordan Matthews High School in Siler City was No. 1.660

Six area schools received Bronze Medals:

  • East Wake Academy in Zebulon
  • J.D. Clement Early College in Durham
  • Johnston College Early College Academy in Smithfield
  • Princeton High in Princeton
  • Wake Early College of Health and Science in Raleigh
  • Wake STEM Early College in Raleigh

U.S. News worked with Raleigh-based RTI International to develop this year’s list, which looked at more than 28,000 public U.S. high schools.”A high school education is imperative for success in both college and a career, and a school’s graduation rate is a key indicator of whether students are being effectively prepared for both paths,” said Anita Narayan, managing editor of Education at U.S. News. “The 2016 Best High Schools rankings provide students and parents with data-driven information on public schools to help them make better-informed decisions about their education.”

For more information about Best High Schools and to view the full list of rankings, click here.

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In other news, 27 Triangle schools made The Washington Post’s 2016 list of “America’s Most Challenging High Schools.”

Once again, the top school in North Carolina was Raleigh Charter High School, which ranked No. 125 on the list of nearly 2,300 public and private high schools. Six other Triangle high schools were ranked within the top 500 nationally.

The Washington Post looked at approximately 22,000 high schools around the country, ranking them based on the number of Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, and Advanced International Certificate of Education tests given divided by the number of graduates.

Additional Triangle schools that finished in the top 500:

  • East Chapel Hill High School was No. 5 in the state and No. 236 nationally
  • Woods Charter School in Chatham County was No. 6 in the state and No. 269 nationally
  • Enloe High School in Raleigh was No. 7 in the state and No. 280 nationally
  • Chapel Hill High School was No. 12 in the state and No. 394 nationally
  •  Green Hope High School in Cary was No. 13 in the state and No. 427 nationally
  • Carrboro High School was No. 14 in the state and No. 442 nationally

For the full list, click here.