Charter Schools Dominate AZ Top 50 Rankings

Last month, the Arizona Department of Education published a ranking of Arizona’s top 50 high schools according to their average SAT scores. For those families that put academics at the top of their high school wish-list, the results paint a compelling picture for some of Arizona’s top charter schools.

In what might best be described as a landslide, charter schools took 9 of the top 10 spots on the list, and 16 of the top 20. BASIS Scottsdale and BASIS Tucson, each ranking in the top 5 nationally, took the top two spots on the list. Clocking in at number 3 is University High School in Tucson, the only traditional public school to crack the top 10.

Of course, test scores are only one measure of a school’s effectiveness, and school rankings tend to shuffle considerably when other factors are weighed in. For example, US News and World Report has their own top schools list, which factors in things like student/teacher ratios and something they call “college readiness.” While you’ll find a lot of similarities among the two lists, there are some notable standouts.

Flagstaff Arts and Leadership AcademyThe Flagstaff Arts and Leadership Academy was the first in our portfolio of charter school design projects. This highly-regarded performing-arts focused charter school doesn’t appear among the top 50 SAT performers, but ranks #5 overall on the US News list.