U.S. News releases top high schools in Alabama

By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor

Several public high schools in Shelby County ranked among the highest in the state in a recently released list, earning silver medals from one of the largest school-ranking organizations in the nation.

U.S. News and World Report recently released its 2018 list of the best public high schools in Alabama, basing the rankings off the number of students exceeding expectations in their state, the number of underserved students performing better than the state average, graduation rates and how prepared graduates were for college-level coursework. The organization also awarded gold, silver and bronze awards to the top 29 percent of schools in the nation, and awarded a college-readiness score out of 100 to each school on the list.

Oak Mountain High School in the Shelby County School System ranked highest among local schools in the state, coming in at No. 5 on the list behind Loveless Academic Magnet, Mountain Brook, Homewood and Bob Jones high schools.

OMHS posted a more-than-95-percent graduation rate, and a 49.5 college readiness grade, earning a silver medal from U.S. News. Oak Mountain has an Advanced Placement class participation rate of 73 percent.

Spain Park High School in the Hoover City School System came in at No. 14 on the list, posting a 95-percent graduation rate, a 35.5 college readiness score and also earning a silver medal from U.S. News.

Spain Park has an AP class participation rate of 47 percent.

Thompson High School in the Alabaster City School System came in at No. 16 on the list, posting a more-than-95-percent graduation rate and a 34.4 college readiness score.

Thompson earned a silver medal from U.S. News, and had a 54-percent AP class participation rate, according to the site.

Chelsea High School in the Shelby County School System came in at No. 19 on the list, posting a more-than-95-percent graduation rate, a 32.5 college readiness score and earning a silver medal from U.S. News.

Chelsea High has a 49-percent AP class participation rate.

Helena High School, also in the Shelby County School System, came in at No. 23 on the list, posting a more-than-95-percent graduation rate, a 30.8 college readiness core and earning a silver medal.

Helena High has a 44-percent AP class participation rate.