Area schools ranked among best in state, nation by U.S. News & World Report
Several suburban high schools were recognized as being among the best in Illinois and across the nation in recent rankings by U.S. News & World Report.
Topping the list of area schools was Stevenson High School in Lincolnshire, which was rated the fifth best of 672 high schools in Illinois and 162nd in the nation.
Top 10 suburban high schools
High school Illinois National
Stevenson 5 162
Hersey 10 304
Prospect 11 319
Libertyville 16 451
Vernon Hills 18 463
Buffalo Grove 21 503
St. Charles North 24 591
Glenbard West 25 594
Barrington 26 626
Neuqua Valley 27 646
Source: U.S. News & World Report
Hersey High School in Arlington Heights was ranked 10th in Illinois and 304th nationally; and Prospect High School in Mt. Prospect, was ranked 11th in state and 319th nationwide.
The U.S. News rankings released Tuesday considered nearly 22,000 public schools from 49 states and the District of Columbia (Nebraska had insufficient data to be included). With help from the American Institutes for Research, they produced numerical rankings based on information from the 2009-10 academic year.
Each school was evaluated for student performance on state assessment tests, and how well schools prepare students for college-level work.
It's the fourth list of rankings released since U.S. News began rating the nation's best high schools in 2007. Stevenson has been recognized each time with a gold medal rating for being in the nation's top 500.
"It validates what we've been doing, and we're grateful that our students' hard work is recognized," said Stevenson spokesman Jim Conrey. "We're fortunate to have tremendous teachers and a community that places a high value on education."
Hersey Principal Tina Cantrell said her school had been ranked several times previously with a silver medal rating before it moved up to gold this year.
"I really believe in our instructional model," Cantrell said of the school, which has about 800 of 2,000 students enrolled in Advanced Placement courses. "All students have access to the same core curriculum, and it has helped us establish a strong culture of learning."
Hersey was one of five high schools in Northwest Suburban High School District 214 ranked among the nation's 1,000 best high schools. Enrollment in AP classes has tripled in the district over the past 10 years, according to research director Steve Cordogan.
"We're very pleased. It's an affirmation of our goals," Cordogan said. "We've tried to instill in our students an attitude of not being afraid to challenge themselves in the classroom."
Other area schools netting gold medal ratings were Libertyville High School, 16th in Illinois and 451st in the nation; and Vernon Hills High School, 18th in state and 463rd nationally.
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