Clayton Schools District Ranking


Daniel Cho, Sports Section Editor

The Clayton Schools District was recently ranked the fourth best school district in the United States by Niche and 17th overall as a high school. Conversely, USNews, an often reputable source for national college rankings, ranked CHS 401st in the nation.

In today’s world, we value numbers. We are constantly looking at statistics, trends, and data to reach conclusions about the overall performance of entities such as school, companies, and businesses.

Numbers are very convincing. An overall increase in sales, an increase in a country’s GDP, or an increase in a school’s average ACT/SAT score can make a group seem like they are performing at a high quality. However, in the midst of all these numbers, it is important to remember why these numbers exist in the first place. They exist to tell the general population of the strengths and weaknesses of specific groups in relation to others. Both Niche and USNews took into consideration AP involvement, test scores, student body composition, and reviews given by critics as a part of their ranking criteria.  

However, the issue today might be our over-reliance on numbers. We tell our students that a certain standardized test score is necessary, we tell our students that certain grades are necessary to get into a good college, and we value our schools based on the ranking given by different websites. That is not to say that these rankings don’t have any merit. Of course it is important to efficiently and easily show the data about a large number of schools in this manner. But is our goal as a high school to continuously surround students with numbers as their defining characteristic? So many students in today’s society fret over their performance in school. Parents pressuring their children to excel at school is at an all time high. Though this causes students to work harder, the negative impacts have been clear. Stress and anxiety have all increased in students nationwide.

Although it is important to applaud CHS’ fourth place national ranking, we should be more focused on instilling the mindset on to all of our students to continuously make CHS a better place academically and socially. Furthermore, we should commend the very aspects of CHS that make us unique: our diverse student body, our great teacher to student ratio, our beautiful campus, and our wonderful community.

To go along with the new year celebrations and goal settings, let us work towards making CHS the best place that we can make it. The disparity between Niche and USNews hardly matters. What matters is that we know that what we have here at CHS is special. Our ranking will constantly fluctuate. There will be constant changes in the makeup of our student body, but the essence of CHS will endure as it has for the past few decades. For once, let’s set aside the numbers to appreciate what CHS has become today.