April 29, 2021
USCHS ranks among 2021 Best High Schools
Upper St. Clair High School ranks among the top high schools in the nation according to U.S. News & World Report. The newspaper released its list of 2021 Best High Schools on April 27, 2021.
Ranked 19th in Pennsylvania, Upper St. Clair is the fourth highest-ranking high school in Allegheny County. Nationally, Upper St. Clair ranks 683rd out of nearly 18,000 public high schools in the nation.
“Achieving a recognition like this in the midst of a pandemic is a testament to Upper St. Clair's commitment to educational excellence,” Dr. Timothy Wagner, Upper St. Clair High School principal, said. “Families and school staff have stuck together on behalf of the adolescents we serve, and students have worked tirelessly to progress in their knowledge and skills.”
Dr. Wagner attributes the school’s success to a united dedication to education within the community.
“USCHS students arrive ready to learn each day, thanks to supportive families, and our teachers and staff are skilled and compassionate in their work,” he said. “Alongside these important features of our success, our curriculum is coherent, well-aligned, and responsive from kindergarten through 12th grade, ensuring students' learning experiences build across years.”
Dr. Wagner cautions that while many of the traditional metrics that rank schools - such as standardized test scores and graduation rates - are critically important to assess, these aren't the only features of a successful high school.
“When families and school personnel focus on the whole child, including all domains of healthy development, students' achievement naturally increases,” Dr. Wagner said. “Considering a child's cognitive, physical, and social/emotional development matters when it comes to serving young people in a school setting — a holistic perspective ensures that the conditions for teaching and learning are maximized.”
U.S. News & World Report ranked approximately 17,860 public high schools out of the nearly 24,000 reviewed. This is the count of public high schools that had a 12th grade enrollment of 15 or greater, or otherwise had sufficient enrollment in other high school grades during the 2018-2019 school year to be analyzed.
The methodology takes a holistic approach to evaluating schools – focusing on 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 exams.
By sharing this information, officials at U.S. News & World Report hope that parents across the country will be armed with information to help them make better-informed decisions about their child's education.
“At U.S. News, we believe that better education drives the future,” according to its website. “We also want to recognize high-performing schools and inspire educators and municipalities to do better.”
The first-ever list of the U.S. News Best High Schools was posted online on Nov. 30, 2007.