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There is no end to the number of education rankings. The Washington Post adds to the ever-growing list by contributing a ranking of America’s Most Challenging Public High Schools. Challenging is simply defined. It’s the number of advanced placement tests divided by the number of seniors who graduate. A ratio of at least 1.000 means a school had as many test-takers as graduates. The higher the number; the better. What’s different about this list is that at seeks identify schools that have done a good job of taking average students and convincing them to take college-level courses and tests. Schools that traditionally have done well because they have large concentrations of top students will not fare well under this index. The Challenge index is an approximate indicator of how well schools have helped students academically.
The index also notes the percentage of students who come from families that qualify for lunch subsidies and the percentage of students who pass at least one college-level test.
American Indian Public Charter School in Oakland, California garnered the honor as the most challenging school in the nation. The school had a Challenge Ratio of 23.571
How did North Carolina schools do? The top five North Carolina schools with challenge ratios are as follows:
Penn-Griffin School for the Arts, High Point 6.962 (44th)
Raleigh Charter School, Raleigh – 5.568 (85th)
Thomas Jefferson Classical Academy, Mooresboro – 4.818 (139th)
Woods Charter School, Chapel Hill – 4.306 (198th)
Grimsley High School, Greensboro -4.093 216th
Can’t help but notice three of the top five NC schools are charter schools. Congrats to all teachers, students and staff.