How Delaware high schools rank in report

Published Sunday, May 5, 2019

Jessica Bies Delaware News Journal USA TODAY NETWORK

The Charter School of Wilmington is the top high school in the state, according to U.S. News and World Report.

Cab Calloway School of the Arts, which is in the same building as Charter School of Wilmington, was ranked No. 2 The media company’s annual high school rankings came out Tuesday. They changed this year because U.S. News included nearly all public schools in 2019.

In previous years, schools that missed a threshold for graduation rates or school assessment tests were not ranked. Now more than 17,000 schools nationwide are numerically ranked – up from last year’s 2,700 schools.

Schools that fell below the 25th percentile can be found in the rankings, but their scores are concealed. Data used in almost all cases are from the 2016-17 school year.

Greg Meece, director of Newark Charter School, believes there are discrepancies in that data and said his school was incorrectly ranked. “For example, the graduation rate for Newark Charter School for 2017 is reported by U.S. News as 98 percent,” he said. “The accurate number is 100 percent.”

(Note: The Delaware Report Card at reportcard.doe.k12.de.us has more recent data about Delaware’s public schools that can be used when picking a school or assessing its performance.) The highest rankings on the report reflect public schools “whose attendees demonstrated outstanding outcomes above expectations in math and reading state assessments, passed a diverse array of college-level exams and graduated in high proportions,” according to a news release from U.S. News.

The rankings

Here’s how schools in Delaware were ranked locally and nationally.

1. Charter School of Wilmington (31 nationally) 2. Cab Calloway School of the Arts (464 nationally) 3. Conrad Schools of Science (923 nationally) 4. Sussex Academy of Arts and Sciences (1,249 nationally) 5. Mount Pleasant High School (2,970 nationally) 6. Caesar Rodney High School (3,389 nationally) 7. Dover High School (3,952 nationally) 8. Middletown High School (3,975 nationally) 9. Sussex Technical High School (4,042 nationally) 10. Concord High School (4,049 nationally) 11. Appoquinimink High School (4,436 nationally) 12. Milford Senior High (4,837 nationally) 13. Polytech High School (5,178 nationally) 14. Indian River High School (5,391 nationally) 15. Brandywine High School (5,437 nationally) 16. Newark Charter School (5,486 nationally) 17. Delaware Military Academy (6,313 nationally) 18. Lake Forest High School ( 6,449 nationally) 19. A.I. Dupont High School (7,015 nationally) 20. Newark High School (7,248 nationally) 21. Woodbridge High School (7,596 nationally) 22. Smryna High School (7,787 nationally) 23. John Dickinson High School (7,805 nationally) 24. Cape Henlopen High School (9,311 nationally) 25. Delmar High School (10,307 nationally) 26. William Penn High School (11,442 nationally) 27. Sussex Central High School (11,463 nationally) 28. Laurel Senior High (11,466 nationally) 29. Howard High School of Technology (12,146 nationally) 30. Thomas McKean High School (12,820 nationally) Tied for 31-38 (12,935 to 17,425 nationally):

 Christiana High School

 Delaware Academy of Public Safety and Security (NOW CLOSED)

 Delcastle Technical High School

 Glasgow High School

 Hodgson Vo-Tech High School

 Positive Outcomes Charter School (serves students who have had “academic difficulty in a traditional school

setting”)

 Seaford Senior High

 St. Georges Technical High School Not ranked:

 Design Thinking Academy

 Early College High School at Delaware State University

 First State Military Academy

 MOT Charter School

 The Wallace Wallin School (a special program for nontraditional students in the Colonial School District)

The methodology

The 2019 Best High Schools rankings look at six factors: college readiness, reading and math proficiency, reading and math performance, underserved student performance, college curriculum breadth and graduation rates.

Specifically, college readiness measures participation and performance on AP and IB exams.

The new methodology assigns weights to the six factors and then produces an overall score on which the ranking is based – as compared to the previous methodology, which involved a four-step process in which the final step used college readiness as the sole basis to determine a school’s numerical rank.

“We enhanced the methodology to provide an even more comprehensive ranking that is easier to understand and, therefore, more useful to parents and educators,” said Robert Morse, chief data strategist at U.S. News.

Underserved student performance is measured by assessing state test scores of only students who are black, Hispanic or come from low-income households, comparing those to non-underserved students. Find out more at usnews.com/education/ best-high-schools/articles/rankings- methodologies.

Contact Jessica Bies at (302) 3242881 or jbies@delawareonline.com. Follow her on Twitter @jessicajbies.