13 Baltimore County Public Schools named on national 'challenge' ranking

Towson ranked highest in the county

Lansdowne makes the list for first time

May 27, 2011

The national High School Challenge has named 13 Baltimore County Public Schools to its list of top U.S. high schools.

The list, compiled and published by the Washington Post, is an annual project that ranks high schools based on academic rigor.

From more than 27,000 high schools across the nation, the list spotlights more than 1,900 high schools that represent the top 7 percent of high schools in the nation, based on total student participation in rigorous coursework and exams.

With 13 schools on the list this year, Baltimore County Public Schools has more schools included than ever before.

Towson High, which this year earned designation as a Blue Ribbon School of Excellence in Maryland, was the highest-ranked school in the county, with the ranking of No. 264 nationwide.

The full list from BCPS is:

• Catonsville High School in Catonsville (ranked No. 944).

• Dulaney High School in Timonium (ranked No. 282).

• Eastern Technical High School in Essex (ranked No. 492).

• Franklin High School in Reisterstown (ranked No. 1,199).

• George Washington Carver Center for Arts and Technology in Towson (ranked No. 487).

• Hereford High School in Hereford (ranked No. 638).

• Lansdowne High School in Lansdowne (ranked No. 1,830).

• Loch Raven High School in Towson (ranked No. 1,623).

• Owings Mills High School in Owings Mills (ranked No. 1,445).

• Perry Hall High School in Perry Hall (ranked No. 1,480).

• Pikesville High School in Pikesville (ranked No. 1,167).

• Towson High School in Towson (ranked No. 264).

• Western School of Technology and Environmental Science in Catonsville (ranked No. 1,129)

Lansdowne High School made the cut for the first time this year.

The annual honor roll is based on the High School Challenge Index, which divides the number of Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, or Cambridge tests taken by all students at a school in 2010 by the number of the school's graduating seniors.

"This recognition reinforces the fact that our students are among the best prepared in the nation for the demands of a rapidly changing workplace and world," said Superintendent Joe Hairston.

In 1992-1993, the AP participation rate for Baltimore County Public Schools was about 2 percent; last year, the system's participation rate was 16 percent, more than double the national rate of 7 percent.

Since it began in 1998, the list had been compiled by both Newsweek magazine and the Post; with the sale of the magazine last year, however, the project's longtime creator and author, Jay Mathews, transferred the entire project to the Post.

The complete High School Challenge may be found at http://apps.washingtonpost.com/highschoolchallenge.

Staff reports

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