By LIZ BUTTON
Rye High School is the second most challenging high school in Westchester County and the 214th most challenging in the nation, according to the Washington Post’s annual school study released April 11.
Rye High School Principal Patricia Taylor said the school’s recognition in the Washington Post’s list of Most Challenging High Schools is a credit to everyone in the district working toward student success, from kindergarten through 12th grade faculty.
“The recently published rankings…reaffirm the pride and enthusiasm that is found in the Rye City School District,” she said.
Rye High School was rated in comparison to more than 2,025 schools in all 50 states and Washington, D.C., and was specially noted for its strengths in academics, athletics and the arts.
Comparing prior years’ rankings, Rye hit 179 in 2013 out of more than 1,900 schools the publication surveyed across the nation. The highest Rye has ranked on the list in the past several years was 56, in 2009. The school’s annual ranking has since dropped, and is now the lowest it has been for the past seven years.
In the Post’s ranking of 312 schools in the Northeast region of the country, Rye High School is ranked at number 20, and comes in at 11 when the count does not consider private and charter schools.
When the Post analyzed all high schools in the state, Rye was ranked 16, and ranked number 10 when private and charter schools are not counted.
Among other factors, the Washington Post scores are based on the number of college-level tests the school gave the previous school year, the number of graduates and the percentage of graduates who passed at least one college-level test during high school.
As of 2014, Rye High School boasts an average score of 27 on the ACT college readiness test and an average SAT score of 1,795. In Rye, 93 percent of students go on to attend four-year colleges after graduation, according to the Post’s list.
The four-year graduation rate is 98 percent at Rye High School.
Taylor said she is proud of students and faculty for rising to challenges they set for themselves.
“There is an underlying belief [that is part of the school district’s philosophy] that all students can achieve success and that support and focus leads to our success,” Taylor said.
Scarsdale High School ranks as Westchester County’s number one most challenging high school, according to the list.
In April 2013, Rye High School was also ranked ninth among all public high schools in the state and 61st in the country in U.S. News & World Report’s list of the best high schools nationwide, which was generated from a survey of 21,000 public high schools.
The 2014 U.S. News & World Report rankings have not yet been released, as of press time.