Last updated: August 25. 2013 7:04AM - 475 Views

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COLUMBUS GROVE — He doesn’t worry about rankings or recognitions, but Columbus Grove High School Principal Scott Hummel can’t deny the honor is nice.

His school was ranked 20th in the state this week by U.S. News & World Report.

“We are really excited about it,” he said. “I am very, very pleased because the teaching staff and the students are very conscientious about doing well academically.”

The magazine’s annual high school ranking puts five other area high schools in the top 100 in the state: Minster at 27, Shawnee at 38, Crestview at 59, Kalida at 60 and Ada at 95. The schools were all deemed silver medal schools.

The magazine analyzed 21,035 public high schools in 49 states and the District of Columbia. Rankings are determined by a three-step process: how each school’s students performed compared to how the average student was statistically expected to perform; how well the school’s least-advantaged students (black, Hispanic and low-income) were performing compared to the average for similar students; and how well students were prepared for college.

Columbus Grove was ranked 37th in 2012. Hummel believes the success comes largely from the school’s curriculum, including offering dual enrollment; Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) classes; and advanced-placement classes.

“We have something for everyone,” he said. “We feel that our staff is qualified and our students like the variety that we have.”

Shawnee Principal Don Wade gave credit to the high expectations teachers have for student performance.

“I have kids all the time come back from college and say, 'I was really ready compared to some of the kids in my classes,'” he said. “I think it has to do with the expectations that teachers hold for student performance, and that is apparent throughout our K-12 system here at Shawnee.”

Shawnee landed 81st the 2012 list. The school’s success, Wade said, also has a lot to do with students and their willingness to do what it takes to be successful.

“It is not just the teachers,” he said. “It is also the willingness of our students to put forth their best efforts.”

Several high schools in the region earned bronze medal status: Allen East, Bluffton, Continental, Ottawa-Glandorf, Ottoville, Fort Jennings, Leipsic, Miller City-New Cleveland, New Bremen, Hardin Northern and Lincolnview.

Walnut Hills High School in Cincinnati earned the top ranking in Ohio, and the School for the Talented and Gifted in Dallas, Texas, was ranked first nationally.

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