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The Journal Gazette

Region’s schools among nation’s finest

– including some repeat winners – are being recognized by U.S. News & World Report as silver- or bronze-rated schools.

Six high schools were named Silver Medal Schools, and six others were deemed Bronze Medal Schools as part of U.S. News & World Report’s “America’s Best High Schools” feature.

This year’s report includes 309 Hoosier school districts and 370 high schools serving more than 330,000 students across the state.

Statewide, there were four Gold Medal Schools, 41 Silver Medal Schools and 82 Bronze Medal Schools. Gold and Silver Medal Schools were ranked in order on state and national lists, while Bronze Medal Schools were listed alphabetically on the report.

Nationally, there were 500 Gold Medal Schools, 1,519 Silver Medal Schools and 2,688 Bronze Medal Schools.

Manchester Junior-Senior High School was the highest-ranked school in northeast Indiana at No. 11.

“When I look at that list and see all of the big schools I’ve looked up to my whole career, it’s very exciting,” Manchester Principal Nancy Alspaugh said.

“We’re a small school in a small country town, and we feel really good about being recognized this way,” she said.

Manchester was also a Silver Medal School in 2013, No. 38 in the state.

Carroll High School, South Adams High School, Westview Junior-Senior High School, Wawasee High School and Warsaw High School were also recognized as Silver Medal Schools this year.

Carroll High Principal Sam DiPrimio said he learned about the rankings last week and was “very pleased” with the results.

“Any time you get recognized by people who are judging you amongst your peers, it’s humbling,” DiPrimio said.

He attributed the school’s success to the students and teachers from kindergarten through high school and said he appreciates their hard work and dedication.

“We all get to share in the success of our students,” DiPrimio said.

South Adams, Westview and Wawasee were Silver Medal Winners in 2013, rated No. 45, No. 24 and No. 36, respectively.

Westview Principal Rich Cory said the school has been recognized multiple times in the past seven to eight years.

“Our teachers work very hard here, and there’s strong support from our community. Our students work hard, and we think we do things well here,” Cory said.

Six area high schools made the list as 2014 Bronze Medal Schools: Bellmont Senior High School, Garrett High School, Tippecanoe Valley High School, Prairie Heights Senior High School, West Noble High School and Wabash High School.

Garrett High School was a Silver Medal School last year, ranked 44th in the state.

West Noble and Wabash high schools were 2013 Bronze Medal Schools.

Gold-rated Hoosier schools are Signature School, Evansville; Herron High School, Indianapolis; Zionsville Community High School; and West Lafayette Junior-Senior High School.

To produce the 2014 rankings, U.S. News teamed up with the Washington, D.C.-based American Institutes for Research, a behavioral and social science research organization, according to U.S. News & World Report’s website.

Analysts first determined whether the students in each school performed better than statistically expected for the average student in the state.

Reading and math results on the state tests were analyzed, and then the percentage of economically disadvantaged students was factored.

For schools that made it past this step, analysts looked at whether the school’s most disadvantaged students – black, Hispanic and low income – were performing better than average for similar students in the state.

Schools that passed this part of the test had their test data for Advanced Placement and/or International Baccalaureate programs analyzed.

jcrothers@jg.net

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