Thursday, May 22, 2008

Newsweek Names Local High Schools Among The Best

Raleigh Charter School and Enloe High School again rank among the top 75 on Newsweek magazine's list of the top public high schools in the country.

Raleigh Charter School ranks No. 27 and Enloe is at No. 72 on the list, which appears online at and features in the May 26 issue of the news magazine. A year ago, Raleigh Charter was No. 20, while Enloe was No. 56.

Newsweek's list ranks schools based on the number of college-level exams taken at a school in a given year. Specifically, the magazine looks at the number of Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate and Cambridge exams taken by all students and divides that figure by the number of graduating seniors.

There were 5.238 college-level exams taken for every graduating student at Raleigh Charter in 2007, the list says. The figure was 3.979 at Enloe.

Newsweek's list is controversial. Parents and school administrations who don't like the list say that measuring college-level exams gives an incomplete picture of school quality.

Jay Mathews, the Washington Post staff writer who puts together the report, agrees that it's not perfect. But, he said in a recent Post article, the list "captures, in a way other school statistics do not, a different attitude about students in the schools that make the list. Those schools turn out to have principals and teachers who are trying hardest to raise the achievement of each child, with college as a useful goal for all until students are old enough to decide what they want to do."

This year's Newsweek list, which features data from 2007, ranks the more than 1,300 public high schools across the country with an exam-to-student ratio of more than 1.

Other Triangle schools to make the list were:

* East Chapel Hill High, No. 145;
* Chapel Hill High, No. 237;
* Pinecrest High in Southern Pines, No. 292;
* Jordan High in Durham, No. 299;
* Durham School of the Arts, No. 305;
* Needham Broughton High in Raleigh, No. 443;
* Green Hope High in Morrisville, No. 594;
* and Wakefield High in Raleigh, No. 1163.

Triangle Business Journal; May 19, 2008

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