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Decorative image: US News & World Report rankings
Jaclyn Buelow

U.S. News & World Report published its 2021 Best Schools rankings this week, which this year included a category specifically for middle schools. Within the 2021 rankings, both South Texas Independent School District (STISD) middle schools and the four STISD high schools ranked among the best in the state and nation.  

In the 2021 Texas Middle Schools rankings, South Texas ISD Preparatory Academy in Edinburg ranked 21st, and South Texas ISD Rising Scholars Academy in San Benito ranked 30th out of 1,942 schools ranked.

In the state rankings, South Texas ISD Health Professions (formerly South Texas High School for Health Professions) in Mercedes ranked 34th, South Texas ISD Science Academy (formerly The Science Academy of South Texas) in Mercedes ranked 45th, South Texas ISD Medical Professions (formerly South Texas Academy for Medical Professions) in Olmito ranked 79th, while South Texas ISD World Scholars (formerly South Texas Business, Education & Technology Academy) in Edinburg ranked 92nd. Out of nearly 18,000 public high schools ranked nationally, Health Professions ranked 205th, Science Academy ranked 257th, Medical Professions ranked 514th, and World Scholars ranked 651st. 

According to U.S. News, the methodology used incorporates six ranking factors, each weighted to produce an overall score that the ranking is based on. Those factors include: College Readiness (30% of the ranking); Math and Reading Proficiency (20%); Math and Reading Performance (20%); Underserved Student Performance (10%); College Curriculum Breadth (10%); and Graduation Rate (10%). U.S News summed up each school’s weighted scores across the six indicators of school quality and then computed for each school a single zero to 100 overall score reflective of performance across these metrics. The overall scores depict how well each school did on a national percentile basis. Health Professions scored 98.85, while Science Academy scored 98.56, Medical Professions 97.12 and World Scholars 96.35. In the middle schools, Preparatory Academy scored 98.97 and Rising Scholars scored 98.51.