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5 Chicagoland schools make top national rankings

by Meg White

5 Chicagoland schools make top national rankings

Chicago Public Schools' Headquarters. Source: Wikimedia Commons

Niche, a website offering data, ratings and user reviews about schools, towns and neighborhoods, released its 2020 Best Schools rankings today. Five schools in Illinois made it into the top 20 national public school rankings, which included an evaluation of over 94,000 K-12 educational institutions:

  • Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy in Aurora (No. 2)
  • Walter Payton College Prep in Chicago (No. 3)
  • Northside College Preparatory High School in Chicago (No. 11)
  • Adlai E. Stevenson High School in Lincolnshire (No. 14)
  • Whitney M. Young Magnet High School in Chicago (No. 20)

Niche differentiates its lists from traditional school rankings, which usually compare test scores and academic performance, by including user input (comments from current students, alumni, and parents) and analyses of campus life, extracurricular activities, the availability of special needs programs and diversity.

“Parents and students need more than test-score data. They need to understand what it’s really like to attend a school before they start the application or registration process,” said Luke Skurman, CEO at Niche, in a statement accompanying the release.

Data about schools often plays into the real estate process, a point not lost on Skurman. He noted that “choosing a school often is related to other big life decisions” and that this type of data offers “a great starting point for helping every family and every student find where they belong.”

Looking strictly at institutions in the Chicago metro area, here’s Niche’s top ten:

  1. Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy in Aurora
  2. Walter Payton College Prep in Chicago
  3. Northside College Preparatory High School in Chicago
  4. Adlai E. Stevenson High School in Lincolnshire
  5. Whitney M. Young Magnet High School in Chicago
  6. Hinsdale Central High School in Hinsdale
  7. Jones College Prep High School in Chicago
  8. Glenbrook South High School in Glenview
  9. Glenbrook North High School in Northbrook
  10. Vernon Hills High School in Vernon Hills

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