For the fourth year in a row, charter schools dominated Utah’s rankings in the annual list of best high schools compiled by U.S. News and World Report. The report, released Monday, names these high schools as the top 10 in the state:
Beehive Science and Technology Academy; charter, Sandy.
InTech Collegiate High School; charter, Logan.
Northern Utah Academy for Math Engineering and Science; charter, Layton.
Academy for Math Engineering and Science; charter, Salt Lake City.
Itineris Early College High; charter, West Jordan.
Karl G. Maeser Preparatory Academy; charter, Lindon.
Corner Canyon High School; Canyons School District, Draper.
Skyline High School; Granite School District, Millcreek.
Farmington High School; Davis School District, Farmington.
Timpview High School; Provo School District, Provo.
Beehive Science and Technology Academy and InTech Collegiate High School maintained their 2021 positions while Farmington High School landed in the top 10 for the first time.
The COVID-19 pandemic made academic assessment data unavailable for the 2019-20 school year, according to U.S. News. The 2022 edition of the rankings used assessment data from the three school years prior to the pandemic (2016-17 to 2018-19) with graduation rates and college readiness data from the 2019-20 school year.
Beehive Science and Technology Academy ranked no. 305 in the nation, according to U.S. News data, falling from no. 224 in 2021. Corner Canyon, the highest ranked traditional high school in the state, ranked no. 980 nationwide.
The report ranked 17,857 public high schools in the United States and 163 in Utah. The shift to charter schools making up a majority of Utah’s top 10 list coincided with a change in the methodology used by U.S. News.
The rankings’ methodology is based on six factors. College readiness, which was 30% of a school’s score, was measured by the proportion of a school’s 12th graders who took and earned qualifying scores on AP or IB exams.
Other factors were performance and proficiency on state assessments for reading, math and, for the first time in 2022, science (worth 40%), underserved student performance (10%), college curriculum breadth (10%) and graduation rates (10%).
The underserved student performance category evaluates how Black, Hispanic and low-income students score on state assessments.
The graduation rate score is based on how many students who entered ninth grade in the 2016-2017 academic year graduated four years later in 2020.
Utah’s high school graduation rate was right at the national average, of 95%.
U.S. News and World Report added the schools’ weighted scores across the six indicators of school quality, then computed a single zero to 100 overall score reflective of each school’s performance. This is the third year it has calculated its rankings using this methodology, meaning only its 2021, 2020 and 2019 rankings can be compared.
For comparison, Utah’s top high schools in 2021 were:
Beehive Science and Technology Academy (same rank)
InTech Collegiate High School (same rank)
Karl G. Maeser Preparatory Academy, a charter in Lindon (now 6th)
Skyline High School (now 8th)
Northern Utah Academy for Math Engineering and Science (now 3rd)
Davis High School (now 11th)
American Preparatory Academy (now 22nd)
Academy for Math Engineering and Science (now 4th)
Park City High School (now 21st)
Itineris Early College High (now 5th)
U.S. News and World Report does not collect information directly from high schools and instead gathers data from the U.S. Department of Education’s Common Core of Data; from statewide math and reading level assessments and high school graduation rates, obtained in most cases from each state’s education agency; from College Board Advanced Placement examination data; and from International Baccalaureate examination data.