The paper’s annual analysis of a schools’ average standardized test scores put Hinsdale Central High School at the top of the list of suburban schools and fourth overall. Lyons Township is ranked at No. 29, up from 34th place last year.
Elm School, part of Hinsdale Elementary District 181, came in at No. 38.
Making the list of top middle schools was Gower, which draws students from Burr Ridge and Willowbrook. Ranked at 44th in the Chicago area, the school dropped from 32nd place last year.
“Making the top 50 is great,” said Superintendent Victor Simon. But he said the district, which also includes Gower West Elementary School, is careful to keep its focus on individual student achievement.
“Aggregate rankings are less important than individual student growth,” he said. He said he and the board are pleased with how the students are progressing.
“Our individual student growth is at a level that our leaders are comfortable with and continue to work to improve,” he said.
Elm School in Burr Ridge is one of six District 181 schools to make the Sun-Times list. Superintendent Renee Schuster said the district’s success, and the success of its students, is a joint effort.
“Their outstanding work is something we celebrate with our staff, families and community. Together, our partnership helps us realize our vision to be a school district where all children experience success and grow in excellence,” she said.
While elementary and middle school rankings are based on an analysis of 2013 math and reading scores on the Illinois Standard Achievement Test, high school rankings are based on the Prairie State Achievement Exams.
Lyons Township High School was ranked 29th in a comparison of juniors’ average math and reading test scores from the exam, taken in March or April.
Superintendent Tim Kilrea said he is pleased with the positive ranking, but said the school strives for continuous improvement.
“Rankings are great, but that’s not what’s driving us,” Kilrea said. “It’s what we’re doing internally, delivering the best possible education at an appropriate level to get very positive results.”
Representatives of Hinsdale Central High School were not available for comment.
Chuck Fieldman and Jane Michaels contributed to this story.