Four Michigan high schools ranked in top 100 nationwide

Jennifer Chambers
The Detroit News
International Academy of Macomb students in a Spanish I class talk in Spanish with each other in May.

Four Michigan high schools ranked in the top 100 nationwide by U.S. News & World Report in its widely expanded 2019 edition of best high schools, including a Grand Rapids school that made the cut this year.

In new, national high school rankings announced Tuesday by the media company, the International Academy of Macomb in Clinton Township, which is run by the Macomb Intermediate School District, ranked eighth; the International Academy in Bloomfield Hills, which is run by Oakland Schools, ranked 42nd; City Middle-High School, a school operated by Grand Rapids Public Schools, ranked 38th; and Washtenaw International High School in Ypsilanti, operated by the Washtenaw Educational Options Consortium, ranked 83rd.

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A full list of the rankings can be found here

Officials say the rankings take a holistic approach to evaluating schools, using six factors: college readiness, reading and math proficiency, reading and math performance, underserved student performance, college curriculum breadth and graduation rates.

College readiness measures participation and performance on Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate test exams, officials said.

This year U.S. News & World Report ranked more than 17,000 schools nationwide — up from last year’s 2,700 schools, more than a six-fold increase.

“Our mission with the Best High Schools rankings has always been to educate families about the schools in their district,” said Anita Narayan, managing editor of Education at U.S. News.

“By evaluating more schools than ever before, the new edition expands that focus so all communities can see which schools in their area are successfully serving their students — including historically underserved populations.”

City Middle-High School in Grand Rapids is an International Baccalaureate school that is ranked in the top 5% of Michigan schools on combined measures of student achievement and growth over time, according to its website.

No Michigan schools made the national Top 10 list for Best STEM High Schools or Best Charter High Schools. The International Academy of Macomb ranked fifth in Best High School Magnet rankings nationally.

In rankings broken down by state, the top 10 Michigan schools include: Rochester Adams High School, Rochester Hills; Black River Public School, Holland; Troy High School; Northville High School; and Seaholm High School, Birmingham.

The new methodology assigns weights to the six factors and then produces an overall score on which the ranking is based, officials said.

The previous methodology used by U.S. News & World Report involved a four-step process in which the final step used college readiness as the sole basis to determine a school’s numerical rank, officials said.

“We enhanced the methodology to provide an even more comprehensive ranking that is easier to understand and, therefore, more useful to parents and educators,” said Robert Morse, chief data strategist at U.S. News.

Officials say the 2019 rankings results aren't comparable to past rankings by U.S. News due to the new and different methodology. The primary reason for a school's rise or fall in the 2019 rankings in almost all cases was the revamped ranking methodology, officials said.

Top 10 ranked by state Michigan high schools

  1. International Academy of Macomb, Clinton Township
  2. City Middle/High School, Grand Rapids
  3. International Academy, Bloomfield Hills
  4. Washtenaw International High School, Ypsilanti
  5. Rochester Adams High School, Rochester Hills
  6. Black River Public School, Holland
  7. Troy High School
  8. Northville High School
  9. Seaholm High School, Birmingham
  10. Skyline High School, Ann Arbor

Source: U.S. News & World Report