24 ‘Top’ Schools And 31st In Cash: Two Colorado Report Cards

An annual tradition for four of the past five years, Newsweek has just published its list of the nation’s top 1,200 public high schools. And, though Colorado didn’t make as strong a showing as it did last year, the Centennial State landed more top schools than in years before that. In all, 24 were cited for excellence.

At the same time, the U.S. Census Bureau just released its latest breakdown of per pupil funding for students across the country. Colorado – which, depending on which studies were used, a few years ago was ranked variously at 47th and at 49th in the country – landed at 31 in the new report.In the Census Bureau’s newest report, in 2005 Colorado’s per pupil funding was $7,730, compared to $6,515 in 2001 – when Colorado ranked 34th in the country by their formula.

Overall, New York ranked highest in per pupil funding, with $14,119 per student. In fact, the top five states and provinces in per pupil funding were all East Coasters; after New York they include New Jersey, District of Columbia, Vermont and Connecticut.

Meanwhile, the following 24 Colorado public high schools (including ranking and city) made Newsweek‘s top tier cut:

Top schools*

146 Lakewood – Lakewood
168 Boulder – Boulder
242 Fairview – Boulder
280 D’Evelyn – Golden
297 Cherry Creek – Greenwood Village
346 Cheyenne Mountain – Colorado Springs
378 Grandview – Aurora
381 Washington – Denver
399 Evergreen – Evergreen
415 East – Denver
431 Poudre – Fort Collins
454 Littleton – Littleton
624 Highlands Ranch – Highlands Ranch
632 Monarch – Louisville
682 Sierra – Grande Blanca
700 Liberty – Colorado Springs
701 Heritage – Littleton
720 Air Academy – Colorado Springs
739 Overland – Aurora
853 Hinkley – Aurora
966 Smoky Hill – Aurora
1081 Pine Creek – Colorado Springs
1135 Thompson Valley – Loveland
1200 Bear Creek – Lakewood

* Public schools are ranked according to a ratio devised by Jay Mathews: the number of Advanced Placement, Intl. Baccalaureate and/or Cambridge tests taken by all students at a school in 2006 divided by the number of graduating seniors. All of the schools on the list have an index of at least 1.000; they are in the top 5 percent of public schools measured this way.

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