Pioneer Charter School of Science in Everett received recognition from two national organizations that rate public schools based on academic performance, closing achievement gaps and college success.
PCSS was ranked the 18th best public high school in Massachusetts by U.S. News & World Report, and is the most diverse non-exam school in the Top 20 with a total minority enrollment of 71 percent. PCSS is one of 15 charter public schools that were among the Commonwealth’s top 100 public high schools in the U.S. News rankings.
PCSS also placed first nationally for “Math and Reading Performance Rank,” which assesses the performance of African American, Latino and low-income students against expectations. There were more than 17,000 high schools in the national rankings.
GreatSchools, a national non-profit organization that provides unvarnished data, information and tools for parents to make informed decisions about their children’s education, released its “College Success Awards” last week. PCSS was one of 13 charter public schools in Massachusetts to be recognized. The awards celebrate schools that excel in preparing students for postsecondary success.
“Our school community should celebrate these accomplishments, because they are the result of a lot of hard work and dedication by our teachers, students, families and staff,” said Barish Icin, CEO of PCSS. “To be ranked alongside public high schools in Belmont, Lexington, Dover-Sherborn and Westwood – some of the state’s most affluent communities – affirms our belief that children of all socio-economic backgrounds can achieve at high levels, and realize their dreams of going to college.” The PCSS community speaks 30 languages and has ties to 40 countries.
PCSS offers students a rigorous academic curriculum with emphasis on math and science, balanced with a strong foundation in the humanities, a character education program, career-oriented college preparation, and strong student/teacher/parent collaboration. The school has a 195-day school calendar, extended days, after school tutoring and voluntary Saturday classes for students who need extra help. Students must complete 40 hours of community service.
U.S. News & World Report worked with RTI International, a global non-profit social science research firm, to determine the national and state rankings. The highest ranked public schools are those whose attendees demonstrated outstanding outcomes above expectations in math and reading state assessments, passed a diverse array of college-level exams and graduated in high proportions, according to U.S. News. Nearly every public high school in America (17,245) was included in the rankings.
The GreatSchools award recognized 1,722 high schools across 25 states that have a successful track record of going beyond simply graduating students to helping them enroll in college and succeed once they get there. Winners represent about 20% of eligible public high schools. Eligibility is determined by data availability and ranges on a state-by-state basis from 13 percent to 88 percent. The College Success Award-winning high schools stand out based on school-level college readiness and postsecondary data collected and shared by their states. The data looks at whether students enroll in college, are ready for college-level coursework, and persist to their second year.