U.S. News and World Report Ranks Valley as Best in Metro

vsw-studyingValley High School has received the highest ranking in the metro area of the best high schools by U.S. News and World Report. Valley ranks seventh in the state, ahead of Johnston, which was ranked eighth and is the only other metro school in the top 10. Cedar Rapids Kennedy was ranked first.

The 2014 U.S. News and World Report Best High Schools rankings are based on data collected from more than 19,000 public U.S. high schools from 50 states and the District of Columbia. The rankings are designed to capture how well high schools educate all of their students and prepare them for college-level work.

Schools are evaluated based on overall student performance on state assessments, Advanced Placement tests and International Baccalaureate exams. The ranking also takes into account how well schools educate black, Hispanic and economically disadvantaged students.

According to the website, “Students [at Valley] have the opportunity to take Advanced Placement course work and exams. The AP participation rate at Valley is 38 percent. The student body makeup is 51 percent male and 49 percent female, and the total minority enrollment is 22 percent.”

The rankings methodology is based on the key principles that a great high school must serve all of its students well, not just those who are college bound, and that it must be able to produce measurable academic outcomes to show the school is successfully educating its student body across a range of performance indicators.