According to U.S. News and World Report, three of the top five high schools in North Carolina were GCS schools

Greensboro, N.C.  Three of North Carolina’s five best high schools are in Guilford County, according to U.S. News & World Report’s annual public high school rankings. Guilford County Schools (GCS) placed four schools in the top ten in the state.

For the third year running, the Early College at Guilford was ranked best in the state and jumped up 11 spots to the 20th best school in the country. It was also ranked the second-best STEM high school in the nation.

Two other GCS schools made North Carolina’s top five: The STEM Early College at North Carolina A&T came in at third in the state and 103rd in the country. Weaver Academy placed fifth in the state, 189th in the country and was named the 51st best Magnet High School in the United States.

Penn-Griffin School for the Arts ranked in the top 10, coming in at number nine in North Carolina, 349th nationally and the number 86 magnet program.

Also making it into the state’s top 50 are Northwest High (34), The Middle College at UNCG (43) and Northern High (50). Click here for the complete list, which includes 27 GCS schools.

The U.S. News Best High Schools rankings include data on more than 24,000 public high schools in 50 states and the District of Columbia. Nearly 18,000 schools were ranked on six factors based on their performance on state assessments and how well they prepare students for college. 539 school in North Carolina were ranked.

U.S. News and World Report’s 2021 rankings are based on a revamped methodology that weighs six indicators of school quality from the 2018-19 school year:

  • College readiness based on the proportions of 12th grade students who took and passed Advanced Placement (AP)/International Baccalaureate (IB) exams;
  • College curriculum breadth based on proportions of 12th-grade students who took and passed AP/IB exams in multiple content areas;
  • Math and reading proficiency based on student performance on state-required tests;
  • Math and reading performance based on whether performance on state assessments exceeded expectations given the school’s proportion of underserved students;
  • Underserved student performance, based on how Black, Hispanic and low-income students performed on state assessments compared with those who are not underserved in the state;
  • Graduation rates based on the proportion of students who entered ninth grade in 2015-16 and graduated four years later.

About Guilford County Schools

Guilford County Schools, the third largest school district in North Carolina, and the 47th largest of more than 14,000 in the United States, serves 73,000 PK-12 students at 125 schools. With approximately 10,000 employees, GCS works in partnership with parents, businesses, colleges and the community to deliver an education that connects student interests and skills with the careers and economy of our future here and around the world. We provide educational choices to meet individual student needs in a culturally diverse citizenship and new opportunities to help our students Soar to Greatness. For more information, visit the district’s website at

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.