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U.S. News & World Report Releases the 2016 Best High Schools Rankings

Washington, D.C. – April 19, 2016 – U.S. News & World Report today announced the 2016 Best High Schools rankings, featuring top-performing schools at the national and state level. The Best High Schools rankings evaluate data on more than 21,500 public high schools to identify which schools are best at preparing students for college and careers.

The School for the Talented and Gifted in Dallas, Texas, takes the No. 1 spot in the national rankings for the fifth straight year, followed by two Arizona schools: BASIS Scottsdale at No. 2 and BASIS Tucson North at No. 3. High Technology High School in Lincroft, New Jersey, is once again the nation’s Best STEM School. U.S. News also released new Best Charter Schools, Best Magnet Schools and individual statewide rankings.

To focus on student outcomes, U.S. News has included graduation rates as a major factor in its methodology – the first time graduation rates have been used to evaluate high schools at this scale. The 6,218 high schools to receive national recognition from U.S. News graduate their students at rates that are 15 percent higher, on average, than other schools across the country.

“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.”

U.S. News recognizes high schools with gold, silver and bronze medals, with gold medals indicating the greatest level of college readiness. Maryland, Connecticut and California are the states with the highest percentage of top-performing 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, Advanced Placement® and International Baccalaureate tests.

U.S. News worked with RTI International, a global research firm, to implement the comprehensive rankings methodology.

2016 Best High Schools National Rankings

  1. School for the Talented and Gifted (TX)
  2. BASIS Scottsdale (AZ)
  3. BASIS Tucson North (AZ)
  4. School of Science and Engineering Magnet (TX)
  5. Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology
  6. BASIS Oro Valley (AZ)
  7. Pine View School (FL)
  8. Academic Magnet High School (SC)
  9. International Academy (MI)
  10. Carnegie Vanguard High School (TX)

2016 Best STEM High Schools

  1. High Technology High School (NJ)
  2. Early College at Guilford (NC)
  3. Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology
  4. BASIS Scottsdale (AZ)
  5. Whitney High School (CA)
  6. BASIS Tucson North (AZ)
  7. Raleigh Charter High School (NC)
  8. International Community School (WA)
  9. Academy of Allied Health and Science (NJ)
  10. Troy High School (CA)


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