JOHNSON COUNTY, Kan. - When ‘Newsweek’ recently released its list of the ‘top high schools’ in the country for 2015, only four Kansas City-area schools made the cut.
Three of those schools were from the Blue Valley School District.
According to the publication, the rankings are based on hard data along with how well the schools are at prepping their students for college.
Out of 500 nationally ranked schools, Blue Valley North was rated the highest in the metro at No. 296, followed by:
Park Hill South (No.305)
Blue Valley West (No. 372)
Blue Valley Northwest (No. 435)
In fact, Blue Valley schools announced Thursday that their students set a new district ACT record to go along with the highest composite score in the metro at 25.4. It’s the first time in history all five schools averaged more than a 25.1. According to the Princeton Review, the national average is between 20-21.
Helping Blue Valley succeed may also be their fiscal advantage as well, as their annual expenditure rate per pupil reached $7,379 last year amongst 22,000 students. That money is then pumped into several programs, such as CAPS (Center for Advanced Professional Studies), which allows many district students to gain real world experience and knowledge through professions such as medicine, business and engineering -- long before they set foot on a college campus.
"Kids being able to see that [real world experience], and [knowing] this is what life is going to be like if I go in this career path, I think is critical,” said Blue Valley Northwest principal Amy Murphy.
The state of Missouri had a total of nine schools on Newsweek’s list. Kansas had just one more: Marion High in central Kansas.