25 Doing the Most With the Least

The Daily Beast ranked the best high schools in the country. Unsurprisingly, the top-performing schools are also—with some notable exceptions—ones in high-income areas. Research has proven that economic deprivation negatively impacts education, but we wanted to take note of the schools that were beating the odds and experiencing incredible academic success despite high poverty levels. We took our overall ranking and multiplied it by the school’s free and reduced lunch rates to determine the nation’s most change-making schools. You can see the full results here.


The Preuss School UCSD

1. The Preuss School UCSD

La Jolla, California


Overall Rank: 195

FINAL SCORE: 6.9929

School Type: Charter

Enrollment: Lottery

Graduation Rate: 96.0%

College Bound: 100%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 65%

AP/IB Tests per student: 1.60

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.30

SAT: 1632

ACT: 23

Uplift Peak Preparatory

2. Uplift Peak Preparatory

Dallas, Texas


Overall Rank: 238

FINAL SCORE: 6.8164

School Type: Charter

Enrollment: Lottery

Graduation Rate: 100.0%

College Bound: 100%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 21%

AP/IB Tests per student: 0.84

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.24

SAT: 1395

ACT: 18

Uplift Williams Preparatory

3. Uplift Williams Preparatory

Dallas, Texas


Overall Rank: 269

FINAL SCORE: 6.6699

School Type: Charter

Enrollment: Lottery

Graduation Rate: 97.8%

College Bound: 100%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 49%

AP/IB Tests per student: 0.99

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.22

SAT: 1332

ACT: 18

Noble Street College Prep

4. Noble Street College Prep

Chicago, Illinois


Overall Rank: 326

FINAL SCORE: 6.4314

School Type: Charter

Enrollment: Open

Graduation Rate: 98.3%

College Bound: 100%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 36%

AP/IB Tests per student: 0.55

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.05

SAT: 

ACT: 19.9

Rosie Sorrells School of Education and Social Services

5. Rosie Sorrells School of Education and Social Services

Dallas, Texas


Overall Rank: 94

FINAL SCORE: 7.4940

School Type: Magnet

Enrollment: Selective

Graduation Rate: 100.0%

College Bound: 97%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 69%

AP/IB Tests per student: 1.42

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.33

SAT: 1400

ACT: 21

Bridgeport High School

6. Bridgeport High School

Bridgeport, Washington


Overall Rank: 443

FINAL SCORE: 5.9011

School Type: Regular

Enrollment: Open

Graduation Rate: 92.6%

College Bound: 100%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 58%

AP/IB Tests per student: 0.73

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.17

SAT: 1600

ACT: N/A


School of Science/Engineering

7. School of Science/Engineering

Dallas, Texas


Overall Rank: 7

FINAL SCORE: 8.9816

School Type: Magnet

Enrollment: Selective

Graduation Rate: 100.0%

College Bound: 98%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 100%

AP/IB Tests per student: 3.90

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.55

SAT: 1746

ACT: 25.9

Dove Science Academy Tulsa

8. Dove Science Academy Tulsa

Tulsa, Oklahoma


Overall Rank: 194

FINAL SCORE: 6.9978

School Type: Charter

Enrollment: Open

Graduation Rate: 100.0%

College Bound: 100%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 30%

AP/IB Tests per student: 0.15

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.40

SAT: 

ACT: 20.5

Animo Jackie Robinson CHS

9. Animo Jackie Robinson CHS

Los Angeles, California


Overall Rank: 472

FINAL SCORE: 5.7362

School Type: Charter

Enrollment: Lottery

Graduation Rate: 97.8%

College Bound: 87%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 14%

AP/IB Tests per student: 0.23

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.47

SAT: 1210

ACT: 18


Van Nuys High Magnets

10. Van Nuys High Magnets

Van Nuys, California


Overall Rank: 263

FINAL SCORE: 6.6955

School Type: Magnet

Enrollment: Lottery

Graduation Rate: 94.1%

College Bound: 99%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 53%

AP/IB Tests per student: 1.10

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.68

SAT: 1570

ACT: 23.7

Science Park High School

11. Science Park High School

Newark, New Jersey


Overall Rank: 157

FINAL SCORE: 7.1327

School Type: Magnet

Enrollment: Selective

Graduation Rate: 99.4%

College Bound: 100%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 30%

AP/IB Tests per student: 0.49

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.47

SAT: 1576

ACT: 21.8

South Texas High School for Health Professions

12. South Texas High School for Health Professions

Mercedes, Texas


Overall Rank: 131

FINAL SCORE: 7.2820

School Type: Magnet

Enrollment: Open

Graduation Rate: 99.0%

College Bound: 100%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 51%

AP/IB Tests per student: 1.41

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.26

SAT: 1522

ACT: 22.6

City of Hialeah Educational Academy

13. City of Hialeah Educational Academy

Hialeah, Florida


Overall Rank: 439

FINAL SCORE: 5.9180

School Type: Charter

Enrollment: Lottery

Graduation Rate: 97.4%

College Bound: 88%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 32%

AP/IB Tests per student: 0.54

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.29

SAT: 1500

ACT: 18.3

School of Business and Management

14. School of Business and Management

Dallas, Texas


Overall Rank: 101

FINAL SCORE: 7.4545

School Type: Magnet

Enrollment: Selective

Graduation Rate: 100.0%

College Bound: 100%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 72%

AP/IB Tests per student: 1.06

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.21

SAT: 1470

ACT: 20

Elizabeth High School

15. Elizabeth High School

Elizabeth, New Jersey


Overall Rank: 257

FINAL SCORE: 6.7136

School Type: Regular

Enrollment: Selective

Graduation Rate: 96.0%

College Bound: 91%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 100%

AP/IB Tests per student: 1.63

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.25

SAT: 1440

ACT: N/A

Trinidad Garza Early College High School

16. Trinidad Garza Early College High School

Dallas, Texas


Overall Rank: 346

FINAL SCORE: 6.3373

School Type: Regular

Enrollment: Lottery

Graduation Rate: 100.0%

College Bound: 83%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 46%

AP/IB Tests per student: 0.26

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.42

SAT: 1311

ACT: 19

Sumner Academy of Arts and Science

17. Sumner Academy of Arts and Science

Kansas City, Kansas


Overall Rank: 95

FINAL SCORE: 7.4887

School Type: Magnet

Enrollment: Selective

Graduation Rate: 100.0%

College Bound: 99%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 44%

AP/IB Tests per student: 0.75

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.60

SAT: N/A

ACT: 21.7


Lincoln College Preparatory Academy

18. Lincoln College Preparatory Academy

Kansas City, Missouri


Overall Rank: 149

FINAL SCORE: 7.1654

School Type: Magnet

Enrollment: Selective

Graduation Rate: 98.5%

College Bound: 98%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 46%

AP/IB Tests per student: 0.75

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.54

SAT: N/A

ACT: 22.4

Uplift Summit International Preparatory

19. Uplift Summit International Preparatory

Arlington, Texas


Overall Rank: 91

FINAL SCORE: 7.5024

School Type: Charter

Enrollment: Lottery

Graduation Rate: 100.0%

College Bound: 100%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 52%

AP/IB Tests per student: 1.44

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.32

SAT: 1587

ACT: 20


La Puente High

20. La Puente High

La Puente, California


Overall Rank: 433

FINAL SCORE: 5.9627

School Type: Regular

Enrollment: Open

Graduation Rate: 98.4%

College Bound: 88%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 37%

AP/IB Tests per student: 0.26

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.26

SAT: 1310

ACT: 17.7

The Daily Beast

21. Medgar Evers College Preparatory School

Brooklyn, New York


Overall Rank: 372

FINAL SCORE: 6.2497

School Type: Regular

Enrollment: Selective

Graduation Rate: 97.0%

College Bound: 98%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 29%

AP/IB Tests per student: 0.58

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.21

SAT: 1460

ACT: N/A

Mater Academy Charter High

22. Mater Academy Charter High

Hialeah Gardens, Florida


Overall Rank: 424

FINAL SCORE: 6.0382

School Type: Charter

Enrollment: Open

Graduation Rate: 95.8%

College Bound: 89%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 61%

AP/IB Tests per student: 1.19

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.28

SAT: 1387

ACT: 18.3

South Texas Academy for Medical Professions

23. South Texas Academy for Medical Professions

San Benito, Texas


Overall Rank: 371

FINAL SCORE: 6.2564

School Type: Magnet

Enrollment: Open

Graduation Rate: 96.1%

College Bound: 93%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 60%

AP/IB Tests per student: 1.63

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.14

SAT: 1367

ACT: 19.6

Alief Kerr High School

24. Alief Kerr High School

Houston, Texas


Overall Rank: 130

FINAL SCORE: 7.2887

School Type: Regular

Enrollment: Selective

Graduation Rate: 100.0%

College Bound: 100%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 15%

AP/IB Tests per student: 0.40

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.64

SAT: 1573

ACT: 23.1

Oscar De La Hoya Animo CHS

25. Oscar De La Hoya Animo CHS

Los Angeles, California


Overall Rank: 593

FINAL SCORE: 4.9377

School Type: Charter

Enrollment: Lottery

Graduation Rate: 90.7%

College Bound: 99%

% Students Enrolled in AP/IB/AICE: 25%

AP/IB Tests per student: 0.36

AP/IB Pass Rate: 0.39

SAT: 1240

ACT: 16.8