Preuss School ranked among state's, nation's best high schools

Not the charter school's first ranking among elite
Posted at 12:40 PM, Apr 26, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-26 15:40:29-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - One of the nation's best high schools is right here in San Diego.

The Preuss School UCSD, a charter middle and high school for low-income, first-generation college students, was recently named the best high school in San Diego County and the 54th best high school nationally, by U.S. News and World Report.

The publication's annual list of the country's best high schools saw the Preuss School rank fifth among the top high schools in California and among the top 15 charter schools nationwide.

"We are proud to have The Preuss School recognized as one of the nation’s best high schools," Pradeep K. Khosla, UC San Diego chancellor, said in a statement. "Since Preuss opened its doors 18 years ago, it has offered a pathway to college for students from underrepresented backgrounds, transforming the lives of our young scholars, their families, and our community."

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Preuss School's principal, Scott Barton, echoed a similar sentiment.

"We are honored to receive this national recognition, which is a testament to the hard work and dedication of our students as well as the educational model Preuss provides," Barton said in a statement.

The charter school was the only school in the top 10 that requires prospective students to be from a low-income family or have no parent or guardian who has graduated from a four-year university. The school has the highest number of economically disadvantaged students, at 95 percent.

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Preuss School is chartered by the San Diego Unified School District and operated by UCSD. According to the university, more than 800 students from throughout the county participate in a single-track college preparatory curriculum offered at the school.

UCSD said longer school days have helped with student success.

"A key tenet of the Preuss model is its commitment to longer learning time. Preuss students are in school longer each day and for 18 more days a year than the typical student in California, which adds up to almost an entire extra academic year over the course of their middle and high school careers," the school said in a release.

The college also noted that the cost of the extra days of class are not covered by the state and are funding through private support.

U.S. News and World Report's study includes data from more than 22,000 public high schools across the country. The ranking process looks at how schools serve their students, performance benchmarks from state proficiency tests, graduation rates, and college preparedness.