The rankings work this way — 40% is based on how many students take and pass Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate tests, 30% on state test scores for poor and minority students, 20% on overall results of state math and reading tests, and 10% on graduation rate.
Education analysts often point to the correlation between wealth/poverty and test results, and the same is true with the U.S. News ranking. Of the schools U.S. News ranked as its top 15 in Ohio, all but one are in districts that rank in the top 30 the state in median income.
The outlier, Ohio’s No. 1-ranked public high school, is Walnut Hills, a Cincinnati Public school that only admits student who score high on an entrance exam.
Stivers School for the Arts, a Dayton Public School that admits students based on auditions, was the seventh-highest ranked school in the Dayton area, and ranked 66th in Ohio. Other schools that were listed in the top 100 in Ohio were Lebanon (88th) and Fairmont (99th). Dayton Early College Academy was the highest-ranked local charter school, at 111th.
Shawnee High School was highest-ranked in the Springfield area, at 90th in Ohio. Schools just south of Dayton that were listed highly included Kings (34th), Lakota East (35th), Lakota West (46th) and Little Miami (71st). The top schools north of the Dayton area were Coldwater at 65th and New Bremen at 69th.