The Best High Schools rankings, available online only, are produced in conjunction with RTI International, a global research firm. U.S. News doesn’t collect data directly from high schools – all data comes directly from official third-party sources. U.S. News receives AP and IB data directly from the College Board and International Baccalaureate, respectively, for use in the rankings. The state assessment data and graduation rates are from each state, and other data comes from the U.S. Department of Education Common Core of Data.
The 2020 edition of Best High Schools includes a numerical ranking of nearly all public high schools in each state and each census-designated metropolitan area with three or more high schools, as well as the Best STEM Schools ranking and comprehensive Best Charter Schools and Best Magnet Schools rankings. There are also rankings of high schools for school districts with three or more high schools.
U.S. News has published detailed school-specific information on enrollment, graduation rates, student body demographics, location, school type and results of state assessments, as well as Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate tests.