Breaking its own record, the Long Beach Unified School District (LBUSD) now boasts an all-time high of seven schools on Newsweek magazine’s annual listing of America’s top high schools.
In the just-released rankings, the national magazine picked the best high schools in the US based upon how hard school staffs work to challenge students with advanced-placement college-level courses and tests. Just over 1,600 schools, only 6 percent of all public schools in America, made the list.
LBUSD high schools surpass other well respected schools such as nearby Los Alamitos High School, even while LBUSD serves a more challenging student population. LBUSD’s California Academy of Mathematics and Science, Wilson Classical High School, Polytechnic High School, Renaissance High School for the Arts, Lakewood High School and Avalon School on Catalina Island all out-rank Los Alamitos High School. The percentage of disadvantaged students, those receiving free or subsidized lunches, is 45 percent, 48 percent, 63 percent, 59 percent, 46 percent and 61 percent respectively at CAMS, Wilson, Poly, Renaissance, Lakewood and Avalon.Â By comparison, only 10 percent of Los Alamitos students receive free and reduced-price lunches.
Long Beach’s Millikan High School also made the list, closing in on Los Alamitos’s ranking even though 56 percent of Millikan students receive subsidized meals.
Newsweek creates the rankings by taking the total number of advanced-placement, International Baccalaureate or Cambridge (AICE) tests given at a school each year and dividing by the number of seniors graduating in May or June.