By DANIELLE BANG
Due to a miscalculation by Newsweek, Northwood High School was absent from Newsweek’s list of “America’s Top High Schools 2015.” Newsweek recorded Northwood’s college enrollment as 21.2%, while the official college enrollment rate is 96%.
On the other hand, University High School was ranked 74th. Other Irvine Unified School District high schools such as Irvine High School and Woodbridge High School were ranked 191st and 220th, respectively.
Newsweek’s associate Maria Bromberg disclosed that Northwood was ranked 1645th on the “absolute list.” Because Newsweek only releases the names of the top 500 schools, Northwood was not on the published list. However, she also stated that the “one factor which contributed to lower rank is a reported college enrollment rate of 21.2%; this was our most heavily weighted criterion.”
The college enrollment rate is 96%, provided by Northwood’s lead counselor Kathi Smith. 72% of the students choose to attend four-year universities and 24% choose to attend community college. Northwood’s representatives have not responded to their incorrect exclusion.
Newsweek listed the methodology used to determine school ranks on its website. The factors that were put into consideration were: College Enrollment Rate, which was 25% of the criteria, Graduation Rate, which was 20%, and weighted SAT/ACT composite (17.5%) among others.
“The education here is good regardless of ranking,” stated Northwood senior Ally Hickok “There’s pride in being in a top-ranked school, but in the end, education isn’t a competition. And rankings, as clearly demonstrated with Newsweek’s error, can be inaccurate.”
Often, highly ranked schools receive more funding and support from donors. “It seems kind of backwards that the ‘best schools’ get money.” stated Taylor Knight (Jr.).
We have asked if Newsweek will be adding Northwood and changing their list. Newsweek has yet to respond.