Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Just two CMS schools make Newsweek's best

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools again made the Newsweek list of America's Best High Schools. But the school system continues to slide further down the list. And with only two schools making the grade this year, CMS could be headed off it entirely.

Twenty-one North Carolina high schools made Newsweek’s revamped list of “America’s Best High Schools,” with four making the top 100. Those four included two schools from Greensboro - The Early College at Guilford and Weaver Academy, the North Carolina School for Science and Math in Durham, and High Point's Penn-Griffin School for the Arts.

CMS's Providence High broke through in the second 100 best, ranking No. 186; Myers Park, the only other CMS school listed among the 500, came in at No. 439. Greensboro had the most N.C. schools on the list, with six. No other N.C. school came close to that number. Chapel Hill had three on the list. Raleigh and Chapel Hill had two on the list.

Newsweek has been ranking the top public high schools in America for more than a decade but this year used a new formula that considered six components: graduation rate (25%), college matriculation rate (25%), AP tests taken per graduate (25%), average SAT/ACT scores (10%), average AP/IB/AICE scores (10%), and AP courses offered (5%). Several experts helped develop the new formula including Wendy Kopp of Teach For America, Tom Vander Ark of Open Education Solutions (formerly executive director for education at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation), and Linda Darling-Hammond, Stanford professor of education and founder of the School Redesign Network.

That new formula might account for several CMS schools dropping off the list. Last year, CMS had 13 schools on the list: Myers Park, Providence, Olympic Math, Engineering and Science High, North Mecklenburg High, East Mecklenburg, Harding University, Northwest School of the Arts, Olympic Biotechnology, Health and Public Service, Ardrey Kell, Mallard Creek, Butler, Olympic Renaissance and Olympic School of International Studies and Global Economics. Myers Park led Charlotte-area schools in the rankings last year, coming in at 66th. In 2007, Myers Park was No. 31 on the list. Now, it's all the way down to 439.

CMS might want to pay some attention to what Greensboro is doing. Its high rankings come mostly because of high graduation rates (100 percent at two schools and nearly that at others), high college-attendance rates (100 percent or nearly so) and high SAT/ACT scores. For a complete listing of schools on Newsweek's list, click here.


Anonymous said...

Of course this year the list only goes up to 500. As opposed to last year when it went to 1200 or so. Important detail.

He's Gone said...

YET AGAIN ANOTHER POORLY WRitten Blog/ Story/ Article hanging High School Teachers and Schools out to dry. WHY NOT PROVIDE THIS ONE DETAIL!! CMS NO LONGER PAYS FOR AP?IB EXAMS as a result hundreds if not thousands of students chose not to pay for the exams themselves and as a result these schools dropped in the rankings.