Oconomowoc High School Named one of America's Most Challenging High Schools
Posted 10/12/2016 01:54PM

Oconomowoc High School Named one of America’s Most Challenging High Schools

Annual ranking released this week by the Washington Post  


Oconomowoc, WI – October 12, 2016. The Oconomowoc Area School District is pleased to announce that the Oconomowoc High School has been named to the Washington Post list of America’s Most Challenging High Schools.

According to the Washington Post, the index score is the number of college-level tests (AP, IB or AICE) given at a school in the previous calendar year, divided by the number of seniors who graduated that year. A ratio of 1.000 means the school had as many tests as graduates. Also taken under consideration are the percentage of students who qualify for the federal free or reduced lunch program, and the percentage of graduates who passed at least one college-level test during their high school career. Oconomowoc High School ranked 15th among a group of 35 Wisconsin high schools, with an index score of 2.254.  

Superintendent Dr. Roger Rindo praised the results, stating, "Increasing academic rigor for all students continues to have the positive impact we were aiming for, and we fully expect that ranking to be even higher next year as we continue to see more and more students accessing challenging, college-level coursework at the Oconomowoc High School.”

All Oconomowoc High School students have the opportunity to access to rigorous and challenging coursework in both AP and IB classes.

Last year, 12 Advanced Placement (AP) classes were offered at OHS. OHS has significantly increased the number of AP students and AP exams taken in the past several years. In the 2015-16 school year, 540 students took an AP class, representing a 29% increase over the previous school year. In addition, OHS students took a total of 783 AP exams, a 39% increase over the previous school year. AP students continue to perform well on exams, with 45 OHS students earning AP Scholar status in 2016, with a mean score of 3.46.  AP Scholar status is granted to student who receive scores of 3 or higher on three or more AP exams.

Last year, 15 International Baccalaureate (IB) classes were offered at OHS. OHS has steadily increased the number of IB exams taken since IB was made available in 2006. OHS students took 214 IB exams in the 2015-16 school year. Three students earned IB Diplomas, and five IB Career Certificates were awarded.

Principal Joseph Moylan, Ph.D. remarked, “Our goal is to have all of our students challenge themselves at a high level. Parents and students are seeing the benefits.”



About the Challenge:

Since 1998, The Post’s Jay Mathews has ranked Washington-area public high schools using the Challenge Index, his measure of how effectively a school prepares its students for college. In 2011, the Post expanded its research to high schools across the United States.

The formula is: Divide the number of Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate or other college-level tests a school gave in 2010 by the number of graduating seniors. While not a measure of the overall quality of the school, the rating can reveal the level of a high school’s commitment to preparing average students for college. For more information, visit http://apps.washingtonpost.com/local/highschoolchallenge/schools/about.


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