Best School Districts in Dallas Area

Student taking testAll campuses in only four Dallas Fort Worth area school districts, Carroll ISD, Lovejoy ISD, Highland Park ISD and Argyle ISD, attained 2014 Student Achievement Index scores higher than 90. However, the district composite Student Achievement Index scores for Frisco ISD and Allen ISD were slightly higher than that of Argyle ISD, despite a small number of their campuses having Student Achievement Indexes of less than 90. Therefore, these six school districts top this 2014 ranking of the best school districts in the DFW metroplex.

The Texas Education Agency (TEA) refers to the percentage of total State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) student assessments for all subjects that met or exceeded TEA achievement standards as the Student Achievement Index. This is a metric used in this analysis and also in the best DFW public high schools and DFW areas with best neighborhood schools analyses.

2014 Top 10 Dallas Fort Worth public school districts

Student Achievement Index number of campuses rated
1Carroll Independent School District97.811
2Lovejoy Independent School District97.36
3Highland Park Independent School District96.87
4Frisco Independent School District94.152
5Allen Independent School District93.322
6Argyle Independent School District93.24
7Prosper Independent School District92.87
8Coppell Independent School District92.114
9Sunnyvale Independent School District91.23
10Wylie ISD90.118

Additional district ranking and campus Student Achievement Index information for public school districts located in the DFW metroplex is presented below on this page.

School districts serving the northwest Dallas suburbs

Many of school districts in the DFW metroplex have campuses in more than one city or town. The Lewisville ISD, for example, serves not only the seven northwest Dallas suburbs listed in the table below, but also Lewisville, Carrollton, and The Colony. A question I hear frequently is how to do the schools that serve the northwest Dallas suburbs compare to other schools in the metroplex. As is shown below and discussed further on this Northwest Dallas Public Schools page, if the following school districts had campuses only in the northwest Dallas suburbs listed, most would rank among the best school districts in the DFW metroplex.

Student Achievement Index northwest Dallas suburbs served
1Carroll Independent School District97.8Southlake, Grapevine, Westlake
4Frisco Independent School District93.8southwest Frisco, west Plano
6Argyle Independent School District93.2Argyle, Bartonville, Flower Mound
7Keller Independent School District92.1Keller, Southlake, Westlake
8Coppell Independent School District92.1Coppell
10Northwest Independent School District91.8Trophy Club, Southlake, Flower Mound, Keller
11Lewisville Independent School District90.5Flower Mound, Highland Village, Coppell, Copper Canyon, Double Oak, southwest Frisco, west Plano
12Plano Independent School District90.5west Plano, southwest Frisco
13Grapevine-Colleyville Independent School District89.0Colleyville, Grapevine

Further evidence of the high quality of schools in the northwest Dallas suburbs profiled on this website is that twelve of the top 20 public high schools in the DFW metroplex are located in this area, as shown on this 2014 best Dallas Fort Worth public high schools page. Eight of the top 12 DFW areas with best neighborhood schools are also located in the northwest Dallas suburbs.

As might be expected, many of DFW's best known private schools have chosen over the years to locate their campuses in the north Dallas area. While there are private schools located in the northwest Dallas suburbs, they are not nearly as numerous as in north Dallas. These private schools are not evaluated or rated by the TEA.

School districts serving the DFW metroplex

This table shows district and campus Student Achievement Index for 53 independent school districts that operate public schools attended by students living in the greater Dallas Fort Worth area. Also shown are how many of the district's campuses had Student Achievement Index higher than 90, between 80 and 89, and so on.

All of the DFW school districts listed below received a Met Standard rating, currently the TEA top accountability rating, for 2014.

Student Achievement Index                    number of campuses                   
  90+  80 - 8970 - 7960 - 69  59-  
Allen ISD93.32011
Anna ISD82.331
Argyle ISD93.24
Arlington ISD73.621922206
Azle ISD79.4145
Birdville ISD80.859152
Burleson ISD84.51931
Carroll ISD97.811
Carrollton-Farmers Branch ISD78.3611135
Castleberry ISD71.741
Cedar Hill ISD71.11732
Celina ISD88.23
Coppell ISD92.1113
Crowley ISD67.23693
Dallas ISD66.92520606950
Denton ISD82.398104
DeSoto ISD63.7 363
Duncanville ISD68.4754
Eagle Mountain-Saginaw ISD79.91255
Everman ISD73.7333
Fort Worth ISD67.0317284527
Frisco ISD94.14561
Garland ISD78.17202910
Godley ISD78.413
Grand Prairie ISD73.13711121
Grapevine-Colleyville ISD89.098
Highland Park ISD96.87
Hurst-Euless-Bedford ISD87.67172
Irving ISD66.39185
Joshua ISD84.2251
Keller ISD88.0141481
Kennedale ISD82.041
Lake Dallas ISD84.25
Lake Worth ISD70.8213
Lancaster ISD70.3127
Lewisville ISD84.52319964
Little Elm ISD78.453
Lovejoy Independent School District97.36
Mansfield ISD83.782661
McKinney ISD88.012115
Melisa ISD85.84
Mesquite ISD76.4122931
Northwest ISD86.89871
Plano ISD89.437199
Prosper ISD92.852
Red Oak ISD82.352
Richardson ISD82.31223135
Rockwall ISD88.71071
Springtown ISD71.31221
Sunnyvale ISD91.221
White Settlement ISD77.33311
Wylie ISD90.1117

Texas Education Agency (TEA) 2014 district Student Achievement Indexes were used to compile this comparison of student performance in Dallas area school districts. While using a single factor to evaluate the school districts might be considered a somewhat simplistic approach, the STAAR tests on which these indexes are based are applied in a consistent manner in all public schools in the state of Texas. It also likely provides better results than the methodology which was previously based on TEA district and campus accountability ratings, and it is easier to understand.

Relying on Student Achievement Indexes as the key metric for comparing student performance at district and campus levels is a major change from the previous emphasis on TEA accountability ratings. After seeing how meaningless, and probably misleading, the previous TEA performance rating system was for comparing the current academic performance of students attending schools in one district versus another, or of students attending one school versus another, it actually was a logical change.

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