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Westchester High Schools Top State, National Rankings

U.S. News and World Report orders schools in state, nation

Whether it rankles educators or delights parents, it never fails to garner attention—U.S. News and World Report's annual ranking of high schools across the nation has been released. 

And this year, high schools in Westchester nabbed several impressive national and state slots.

The survey looked at over 22,000 high schools across 49 states (Nebraska was omitted) and dishes out 500 gold medals. Institutions are ordered based upon state exam performance and students' readiness for college.

Nearest to the number one spot is Yonkers Middle High School, ranked fourth in the state and 24th in the nation. The school serves 1,024 students, 67-percent of whom are classified as "economically disadvantaged."

Close to Yonkers is , ranked 11th in the state and 72nd in the nation. Rye, which houses 885 students, has a 14:1 student-teacher ratio. 86-percent of its students participate in Advanced Placement courses, according to the report.

Horace Greeley High School in Chappaqua follows closely behind, earning a rank of 14th in the state and 79th in the nation. Greeley, with 1,281 students and a 12:1 student-teacher ratio, is the only high school in its district.

Just behind these top performers are:

  • Dobbs Ferry High School: 16th in the state, 83rd in the nation
  • Blind Brook High School in Rye Brook: 24th in the state, 123rd in the nation
  • Irvington High School: 30th in the state, 182nd in the nation
  • l: 33rd in the state, 199th in the nation
  • Byram Hills High School in Armonk: 35th in the state, 208th in the nation
  • John Jay High School in Cross River: 39th in the state, 238th in the nation
  • Scarsdale High School: 47th in the state, 315th in the nation

In Rockland, Tappan Zee High School and Pearl River High School came close to making the state's top 50—read more about them .

For a closer look at New York high schools on the survey, click here.

Silvia May 08, 2012 at 08:03 PM
for anyone interested in SHHS http://www.usnews.com/education/best-high-schools/new-york/districts/union-free-school-district-of-the-tarrytowns/sleepy-hollow-high-school-14115
Krista Madsen (Editor) May 08, 2012 at 08:30 PM
Will be updating particularly on our (lack of) rank here in SH tomorrow as well!
Henry Ferlauto May 09, 2012 at 01:38 AM
All great to see. Hopefully the methods used by those most successful schools can be shared with those not performing so well. This is because there is unfortunately a well represented performance bell curve in Westchester County. The cities in Westchester like Mount Vernon, New Rochelle, White Plains, and some of the high schools in Yonkers have 4-year graduation rates well below 90%, among other high-level performance deficiencies. Mount Vernon: 65% Yonkers Roosevelt: 76% New Rochelle: 80% White Plains: 80% Yonkers Gorton: 86% Yonkers Lincoln: 87% Source: http://www.westchestermagazine.com/Westchester-Magazine/High-Schools-2011/ One does have to wonder in particular about Yonkers and how they can have such disparities between the different schools. Yonkers Saunders and Yonkers High School have 4 year rates of 94% and 97%, respectively.
Dr John May 09, 2012 at 10:56 AM
I don’t see Harrison High School on this list. Yet Rye is and 4 other Westchester Schools. The BOE is suggesting we approve a 104.2 MILLION DOLLAR budget to maintain the quality of education our children are getting. Evidently this quality of education is not enough to make the top 100 schools. Where does this money go? ADMINISTRATORS that’s where most of it goes. Disregard the smoke and mirrors that the BOE puts out there and vote no on May 15 2012. This is yours and my money being spent tell them enough!! This is the bulk of your taxes in the Town of Harrison. This School budget is almost twice of what he Town Budget is. When the town has a budget meeting the place is packed yet no one will come out to vote against the school budget. Please get out and vote no May 15th 2012
Bill Cruse May 09, 2012 at 12:09 PM
Another glaring statement that in this country economic advantage leads to educational advantage. It's sad that as a society we can't find a way to break this cycle.
bd May 09, 2012 at 06:54 PM
All budgets are going to pass. Taxes will rise ever year despite the cap - because there are ways to work around this. You just have to cut back at home and dig into your retirement savings, people. As usual only a few will shop up to vote, mostly those who want the budget to pass. And the story goes on, year after year. Forgotten, till the next budget.
Bob Zahm May 09, 2012 at 11:25 PM
@Dr. John - Your idea that most of the money from school budgets goes to Administrators is patently wrong. Typically, for NYS school districts, the administration expense is under 3% of the budget. Outliers get as high as 5%. Also typically 70-80% of a school district's budget goes to instruction, facilities, and support staff (aides, etc.). Vote no if you want to, but have a good reason for doing so as opposed to making up a poor excuse.
Bob Zahm May 09, 2012 at 11:27 PM
@bd - The tax cap was never designed to reduce or even prevent taxes from rising. It was intended to slow the rate of growth. Now if you really want to tackle the tax problem, work to get NYS to eliminate unfunded mandates and move to a defined contribution retirement plan from the current defined benefit retirement plan for all public employees in NYS.
Dr John May 10, 2012 at 11:20 AM
Bob Zahm - my apologies. I did not intend to make it seem that the while budget was administrators. We do in Harrison have more administrators with unusually high salaries. That being said, why are we proposing a 104.2 million dollar budget for "quality education" for the children of this town when we don't make the top 100 list. I remember that last year we made a list of top schools in Westchester and this was shoved in our faces. The good reason I have for voting no is this budget is the bulk of the taxes that Harrison residents pay and one of the reasons that people are retiring and moving out of town. This is all about reckless spending and we are already being told it will be worse next year. I am suggesting we vote no and have the school board go back and make more adjustments without threatening that the children will lose if this is done. We all have to work with what we have and if you can't do this maybe you shouldn't be in the position you are in.
Conservative NYer May 10, 2012 at 01:19 PM
Fantastic!! I pay $12,000 just for school taxes and Port Chester High School is ranked 159!! Way to go........impressive!! Glad to see my hard earned money is being allocated properly....Sheesh...Horrible, absolutely horrible.
BG7 May 10, 2012 at 02:09 PM
US News Reports rankings are mainly based on AP or IB particiaption. Thats why Yonkers ranks above, for example, Scarsdale and Chappaqua and Rye. If you want a different angle on this, look at the English and Math scores for Yonkers compared to those others. The "best" schools ranking need to be considered more carefully than just accpeting it at face value. As for Port Chester - look at the numbers of limited English proficiency and poverty assistance levels in Port Chester schools, and you'll see Port Chester is not doing such a bad job against those challenges.
bd May 10, 2012 at 05:26 PM
I think are property taxes are above and over the roof. Instead of an increase they should be reversed. Everybody complains about federal taxes being high. At least that is based on income. You have to pay property taxes even if you make nothing.....Ultimately, you would have paid more in property taxes than you would have paid for your home. The only people that seem to benefit is the Administrative Staff as that salaries and benefits get bigger and bigger.
bd May 10, 2012 at 05:27 PM
Their answer to you as alway will be....the more you pay the better they will perform.
Bob Zahm May 10, 2012 at 06:06 PM
BD - have you gone to a school board meeting for wherever you live to make your opinion known? Have you read the district's proposed budget? Have you made suggestions for items to cut? Have you consistently participated in the annual budget vote? Do you encourage others to vote? I ask all these questions because complaining about something does nothing to solve the problem. It may make the complainer feel better for a little while, but that's about it. And, on your complaint about administrative staff, please see my response, above, to Dr. John.
Dr John May 10, 2012 at 07:01 PM
How about work to cap superintendents salaries as thet did in NJ. Is it right the Wool should earn as much as the President of US ?
Dr John May 10, 2012 at 07:08 PM
Bob , even if the administrative salaries are 5 percent of the Budget eliminating some of these positions and freezing salaries at that level would bring the total budget under 100 million. I see thar as a good start. As for going to school board meeting and commenting in Harrison this is useless since you make a comment or ask a question and don not get an response. A total waste of time. Also comment and question time is before the meeting so how do you comment on something that comes up in the meeting. Your the expert let us know how to accomplish getting through to the BOE
Bob Zahm May 10, 2012 at 09:30 PM
@ Dr. John - I'm not familiar with Harrison's BoE - just Rye's. And I've been personally frustated as every single fact-based reduction I identify is denied by the Board for a couple of years and then eventually makes it into (or out of, actually) some future budget. What I think is effective is to a.) get on the Board; b.) participate in Board meetings and publicly raise the points you believe involve overspending with recommendations for how to reduce it; c.) communicate to voters in your district - letters to the editor of local press, some blog posting (but pretty ineffective in my book), and direct contact through letters to "your neighbors" / speaking at local clubs / groups, etc. Ultimately, the Board will make change only when they believe they are forced to unless membership in the Board changes.
Concerned Father May 10, 2012 at 09:55 PM
Every other superintendent in the area has a PHD with the exception of Harrison's and no one wonders why or questions why our very handsomely paid super is a Mr. instead of a Dr. It would seem to me that the head of an educational body should be able to excel himself. Obviously not here in Harrison..........
Dr John May 11, 2012 at 10:42 AM
Bob – Thank you for these suggestions. We have all done these such as letters to the papers and blogs and talking to neighbors. As for getting elected to the board. Many of us have run but the process is so corrupted that it is nearly impossible to get elected. There is an organization that was formed “The Friends of Harrison Schools” who pretty much support the incumbents or anyone the Superintendent approves of (In other words anyone who can be manipulated by him). This is an organization who will throw money and these candidates and makes it a one sided race. The voting process leaves much to be desired as well. This should be for registered voters only! This would stop what is going on in our town.
Silvia May 11, 2012 at 12:17 PM
Krista, any news yet from SHHS, or is the district too busy getting ready for the budet vote on May 15th??? I believe 'non ranking' deserves a kind of an explanation from the people in charge.
Krista Madsen (Editor) May 11, 2012 at 02:15 PM
Hi Silvia, busy week for schools - just got the Superintendent to comment today, http://patch.com/A-tlm8

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