Town Crier News Staff
Manila High School has received a bronze ranking in U.S. News & World Report's list of best high schools in the country. Manila was among the high schools recognized in the Dec. 10 edition.
"It was a great surprise," Pam Chipman, high school principal, said. "I received a telephone call from ANC congratulating us on being named. We were not aware of the rating and had not submitted any information. It was like getting a great Christmas present. The rating is for high schools but it marks a kindergarten through high school effort on our teachers, staff, and students."
In the report from U.S. News & World, it was its first ever ranking of America's Best High Schools. High schools in 40 states were put through a three-step analysis measuring how each school's students performed on state tests, adjusting for student circumstances. The study evaluated how well each school's disadvantaged students did and looked at whether the school was successful in providing college-level coursework.
Out of the 18,790 public high schools in 40 states using data from the 2005-06 school year the top 100 earned gold medal status; 405 were awarded silver medal status and 1,086 schools earned bronze status.
"I made the announcement during an assembly and our teachers and students were excited," Chipman said.
Two schools in the state received silver rankings, Valley View and Dardanelle High Schools.
Chipman said schools meeting all of the magazine's formula criteria but not offering advanced placement courses were given bronze rankings.
Chipman said since the 2005-06 year the Manila District has developed five Advance Placement classes.
"We were very pleased to have eight students score 3 or above in our AP classes last year," Chipman said. "Our goal is to meet the needs of all of our students preparing them for their future. The recognition lets us know we are on the right direction and we are very excited. It is a tribute to our staff, students, teachers and our community."