Vandegrift named one of the top 100 high schools in Texas

By SETH LUSTER, Hill Country News

Antonia Denison looks into the crowd at the H-E-B Center at Cedar Park during the 2018 Vandegrift graduation ceremony last June while Anna Fletcher looks on. Vandegrift is one of the top high schools in Texas. COURTESY LEANDER ISD

Vandegrift High School is one of the top 100 high schools in Texas and part of the top 1,000 in the nation, according to a newly released ranking of high schools. The list, created by U.S. News & World Report, placed Vandegrift at 74 out of 2,059 charter, magnet, and traditional high schools in Texas. Nationally, the school was placed 509 out of over 17,000 high schools across the country.  

“It’s an honor and source of pride to be recognized by their program,” said Charlie Little, VHS principal.

“At VHS, we welcome any opportunity to compare our students on the national or world stage and look for ways to continuously improve the education of our students so they can compete at any level,” Little said.

Vandegrift, which opened  just a decade ago, achieved the highest rank of any high school in Leander ISD. The other schools in the district included Cedar Park High School at place 111, Vista Ridge High School at 131, Leander High School at 209 and Rouse High School at 249.

The ranking was coordinated by U.S. News and RTI international, a non-profit that provides a wide range of research services including statistics research. According to U.S. News, the methodology for ranking schools was changed this year. High schools in 2019 were ranked based on six indicators weighted by importance in this order: college readiness, curriculum breadth, reading and math proficiency, reading and math performance, underserved student performance and graduation rate.

Of these, Vandegrift ranked highest in curriculum breath, at place 319 out of 17,000 other high schools. Curriculum breadth ranks high schools based on the amount of 12th graders who took and passed AP and IB exams in multiple areas.  

For the other available indicators, Vandegrift placed 478 on the College Readiness Index Rank, 978 on the Math and Reading Proficiency Rank, 3,186 on the Math and Reading Performance Rank and 2,194 on the Graduation Rate Rank.