Two Houston ISD high schools have been ranked among the top 20 in the nation by U.S. News & World Report for 2017.
The Carnegie Vanguard High School ranked as the eight-best in the country and second-best in the state, while DeBakey High School for Health Professions was named 18th in the country and fourth-best in Texas. Challenge Early College High School in HISD was ranked the eighth-best in Texas but 69th-best nationwide.
Both schools jumped in the rankings — Carnegie Vanguard moving up from the No. 10 slot last year and DeBakey High School rising from the 29th-best school in the nation in 2016.
U.S. World & News Report’s annual rankings of high schools and colleges are among the most closely followed in education.
Despite the recognition of HISD’s top two magnet schools and the district’s focus on such programs, many of the district’s other magnets fell much lower on the list. All eight of the Dallas ISD magnet schools ranked by U.S. News & World Report placed among the top 100 magnet programs in the country, while only five of Houston’s 15 ranked magnet schools made the cut. Jordan High School was ranked third-to-last at No. 290.
Still, schools ranked lower on the list were among the top-performers in the nation, earning a bronze designation and a ranking. More than 70 percent of high schools nationwide were not ranked or given a distinction.
Houston ISD’s two highest ranked schools were among four in Texas to earn slots in the nationwide top 20. The other two were located within the Dallas ISD. Houston’s suburban school districts did not have any schools represented on the state’s top 20 list. Aldine ISD’s Victory Early College High School came closest, as the 21st best in the state.
But YES Prep, a local charter school operator, saw four of its Houston-area schools place among the state’s top 20: YES Prep North Central, ranked 19th; YES Prep Southeast, 18th; YES Prep East End, 12th; and YES Prep Southwest, ranked 11th.
Officials with U.S. News and World Report devise the rankings by looking at whether students perform better than expected in their state, how well disadvantaged students perform compared to the state average, graduation rates and preparedness for college-level coursework.