Best Dallas High Schools
The 2018 best Dallas public high school rankings on this page identify traditional open enrollment, magnet and charter high schools in the Dallas area that currently are having the greatest broad-based teaching success and are at the same time best preparing their students for post secondary education experiences.
School for the Talented and Gifted and School of Science and Engineering retained their top two positions from the previous year ranking in this 2018 best Dallas public high school ranking. North Hills Preparatory High School moved into the third spot, demoting Highland Park High School to fourth place. Westlake Academy is now ranked fifth, pushing Carroll Senior High School / Carroll High School and Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, ranked fourth and fifth last year, to the sixth and seventh positions.
About 85 percent of the 248 high schools included in this best public high schools in Dallas ranking are open enrollment schools operated by local school districts. The remaining schools are pretty evenly split between magnet schools, also by operated by local school districts, and charter schools operated by non-profit corporations, higher education institutions and governmental entities. Lists of the top ranked schools of each type are displayed by clicking on these top DFW open enrollment high schools, top DFW magnet high schools and top DFW charter high schools jump links.
2018 top 50 Dallas high schools
The twenty-two highest ranking Dallas high schools listed below also earned recognition as 2018 top 50 Texas high schools.
The data presented in this table can be sorted by clicking on the table headings. You also can limit the data display to a single school or school district by typing the name of a school or school district in the Search box.
|Advanced Placement /|
|college admission tests|
|1||School for the Talented and Gifted||Dallas ISD||261||9 - 12||A+||100.0||100.0||97.1%||85.3%||100.0%||1957||29.2|
|2||School of Science and Engineering||Dallas ISD||418||9 - 12||A+||99.8||93.0||93.7%||76.5%||100.0%||1908||29.3|
|3||Uplift Education - North Hills Preparatory High School||Uplift Education||527||9 - 12||A+||95.5||75.3||69.9%||75.6%||100.0%||1724||25.2|
|4||Highland Park High School||Highland Park ISD||2,159||9 - 12||A+||98.3||66.5||45.6%||74.5%||99.0%||1814||27.1|
|5||Westlake Academy||Westlake Academy Charter School||843||K - 12||A+||95.9||70.5||64.7%||69.1%||100.0%||1697||25.8|
|6||Carroll Senior High School||Carroll ISD||2,746||11 - 12||A+||98.9||59.0||30.9%||83.5%||96.4%||1684||25.7|
|7||Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts||Dallas ISD||929||9 - 12||A||98.0||54.1||54.4%||42.6%||100.0%||1598||23.4|
|8||Lovejoy High School||Lovejoy ISD||1,431||9 - 12||A||96.8||54.8||34.9%||66.8%||94.9%||1582||24.1|
|9||Imagine International Academy of North Texas||Imagine International Academy||1,230||K - 12||A||93.9||59.4||35.9%||74.3%||100.0%||1683||25.8|
|10||Rangel Young Women's Leadership School||Dallas ISD||271||9 - 12||A||99.6||48.7||55.7%||27.6%||100.0%||1598||22.7|
|11||School of Health Professions||Dallas ISD||549||9 - 12||A||100.0||46.2||63.7%||24.7%||100.0%||1478||21.2|
|12||Sanders Law Magnet||Dallas ISD||381||9 - 12||A||99.5||46.2||63.7%||26.2%||100.0%||1473||20.5|
|13||Liberty High School||Frisco ISD||2,060||9 - 12||A||94.0||53.2||26.0%||81.5%||92.2%||1565||23.9|
|14||Plano West Senior High School||Plano ISD||5,666||11 - 12||A||94.2||51.1||27.4%||84.1%||84.6%||1445||22.2|
|15||Coppell High School||Coppell ISD||3,409||9 - 12||A||92.0||55.0||25.9%||82.6%||98.7%||1707||24.1|
|16||Wakeland High School||Frisco ISD||2,132||9 - 12||A||96.3||46.2||22.3%||70.5%||88.5%||1433||21.6|
|17||School of Business and Magement||Dallas ISD||506||9 - 12||A||99.6||38.9||50.9%||15.9%||100.0%||1406||19.1|
|18||Garza Early College High School||Dallas ISD||425||9 - 12||A||99.8||38.5||15.1%||37.9%||100.0%||1416||19.9|
|19||Texas Academy of Biomedical Sciences||Fort Worth ISD||385||9 - 12||A||99.0||39.4||12.1%||26.2%||100.0%||1456||22.3|
|20||Flower Mound High School||Lewisville ISD||3,578||10 - 12||A||94.7||47.0||16.6%||85.2%||89.1%||1520||22.6|
|21||Lassiter Early College High School||Dallas ISD||237||9 - 12||A||100.0||37.0||13.1%||19.0%||100.0%||1409||20.8|
|22||Plano ISD Academy High School||Plano ISD||455||9 - 12||A||99.2||38.2||0.9%||89.9%||1502||22.5|
|23||Richland Collegiate High School||Richland Collegiate High School||572||11 - 12||A||99.2||37.9||0.2%||96.0%||1500||22.2|
|24||Cedar Hill Collegiate High School||Cedar Hill ISD||406||9 - 12||A||99.3||37.7||100.0%||1503||21.9|
|25||Sorrells School of Education and Social Services||Dallas ISD||333||9 - 12||A||98.6||38.0||50.0%||13.9%||100.0%||1372||19.4|
|26||Keller High School||Keller ISD||2,876||9 - 12||A||94.5||45.1||19.9%||72.9%||88.9%||1430||21.4|
|27||Waxahachie Global High School||Waxahachie ISD||418||9 - 12||A||98.3||37.2||95.6%||1473||21.7|
|28||Marcus High School||Lewisville ISD||3,337||9 - 12||A||93.1||46.4||19.4%||82.4%||88.0%||1450||21.6|
|29||Grand Prairie Fine Arts Academy||Grand Prairie ISD||740||6 - 12||A-||97.4||38.1||48.5%||20.5%||100.0%||1387||17.1|
|30||Centennial High School||Frisco ISD||2,037||9 - 12||A-||94.4||42.4||25.0%||73.2%||75.4%||1236||18.5|
|31||Mansfield Frontier High School||Mansfield ISD||230||11 - 12||A-||100.0||32.0||21.1%||21.9%||77.5%||1155||17.2|
|32||Argyle High School||Argyle ISD||800||9 - 12||A-||94.7||41.6||5.6%||77.8%||95.8%||1525||23.0|
|33||Independence High School||Frisco ISD||1,823||9 - 12||A-||93.0||42.1||23.3%||71.0%||80.0%||1258||19.0|
|34||Steele Accelerated High School||Northwest ISD||142||9 - 12||A-||96.9||34.7||100.0%||1416||19.7|
|35||Gilliam Collegiate Academy||Dallas ISD||364||9 - 12||A-||96.6||34.2||21.3%||20.0%||100.0%||1288||18.0|
|36||Colleyville Heritage High School||Grapevine-Colleyville ISD||2,078||9 - 12||A-||87.9||49.8||34.3%||63.4%||87.8%||1430||21.8|
|37||Heritage High School||Frisco ISD||2,075||9 - 12||A-||92.9||40.6||21.2%||73.1%||79.4%||1231||18.4|
|38||Nelson High School||Northwest ISD||2,551||9 - 12||A-||89.8||46.1||29.4%||51.2%||100.0%||1524||20.8|
|39||McKinney Boyd High School||McKinney ISD||2,814||9 - 12||A-||92.0||41.9||26.2%||61.7%||78.1%||1255||19.0|
|40||Fort Worth Adademy of Fine Arts||Fort Worth Adademy of Fine Arts||343||7 - 12||A-||92.5||41.1||21.5%||26.8%||94.3%||1506||21.8|
|41||New Tech High School at Coppell||Coppell ISD||325||9 - 12||A-||91.0||42.5||10.7%||49.4%||100.0%||1593||22.5|
|42||Prosper High School||Prosper ISD||2,515||9 - 12||A-||92.9||38.4||14.5%||65.6%||81.9%||1298||19.0|
|43||Plano Senior High School||Plano ISD||5,392||11 - 12||A-||91.3||40.7||20.0%||85.5%||72.3%||1186||18.1|
|44||Obama Male Leadership Academy||Dallas ISD||187||9 - 12||A-||99.0||26.3||64.7%||20.0%||100.0%||1467|
|45||Sunnyvale High School||Sunnyvale ISD||500||9 - 12||A-||92.9||36.0||89.3%||1418||21.2|
|46||Hebron High School||Lewisville ISD||3,618||9 - 12||A-||89.2||42.5||18.3%||80.3%||81.2%||1307||20.1|
|47||Frisco High School||Frisco ISD||1,674||9 - 12||A-||88.7||43.2||24.2%||71.9%||77.8%||1262||19.6|
|48||Marine Creek Collegiate High School||Fort Worth ISD||313||9 - 12||A-||93.4||34.6||100.0%||1363||20.3|
|49||Grapevine High School||Grapevine-Colleyville ISD||1,820||9 - 12||B+||86.1||46.9||35.7%||57.3%||82.2%||1333||20.7|
|50||Uplift Education - Summit International High School||Uplift Education||438||9 - 12||B+||85.5||47.7||58.6%||34.0%||100.0%||1438||20.4|
Source: Texas Education Agency.
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Each of the Dallas area high schools included in this ranking was evaluated using three metrics: 1) students performance on the 2017 State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) evaluations administered by the Texas Education Commission (TEA), 2) participation in and successful completion of Advanced Placement (AP) and International Baccalaureate (IB) courses, and 3) percentage of graduating seniors taking the SAT and ACT college admission tests and their performance on those tests. TEA ratings were not considered in this analysis since all but four of the low ranked high schools in this area received Met Standard accountability ratings.
Most Texas high schools offer a four-year curriculum at a single campus, but some school districts have chosen to operate separate campuses for ninth grade students or for ninth and tenth grade students. In this analysis, the performance metrics for high schools that are a part of these multiple campus arrangements are combined and the schools are evaluated in the same manner as the four-year, single-campus high schools. Other school districts and some charter districts operate schools that teach more than four grades. The STAAR assessment student performance metric used in this best Texas high schools ranking is for all grade levels taught at those schools.
Unlike some other published rankings, this analysis examined only the most credible and most current student performance data available and no consideration was given to student demographics, changes in student performance over time on the STAAR tests, and other such factors or to subjective factors such as anonymous self-selected reviews and statistically invalid online opinion surveys. The difference between carefully selecting fact-based metrics and using probably well-intentioned, but poorly selected metrics or narrowly formed opinions to identify high performing schools and school districts is plainly demonstrated by these best Texas high schools and best Texas school districts online rankings comparisons. Just click on the column headings that identify the sources of the rankings and see which rankings show strong positive correlation with the TEA-sourced performance results displayed in the ranking tables.
Additional information about how the performance of these DFW public high schools was evaluated and ranked in this analysis, how overall academic performance was graded, and the 2018 rankings for all 248 high schools included in this study are available by clicking on this complete DFW public high schools rankings link.
Open enrollment high schools
Of the 248 Dallas area public high schools and multiple campus arrangements evaluated, 202 are traditional open enrollment schools for which the only requirement for admittance is residency in the district and school attendance area. The 25 DFW open enrollment high schools that ranked highest in this 2018 analysis are shown below. Additional performance and other information for schools located in the communities featured on this website can be accessed by clicking on the name of the school.
Top 25 Dallas open enrollment high schools
Magnet high schools
In addition to their open enrollment schools, a number of DFW school districts also operate magnet schools. Magnet schools provide career-oriented or specialized curriculum in addition to academic subjects, and admittance typically is based on students' previous academic performance and interests demonstrated in student interviews, auditions, essays, and other similar faculty assessments. As would be expected, since admission to magnet schools generally is highly selective and limited, the average standardized test results of the magnet schools generally are much higher than results attained by the open enrollment schools that their students otherwise would attend.
These factors, probably to a large extent, have enabled the two Dallas Independent School District schools that rank highest among the fifteen magnet schools included in this analysis to frequently be recognized in national surveys as two of the best high schools in the U.S. In any event, they also top this 2018 DFW best public high schools ranking.
Top 20 Dallas magnet high schools
|1||School for the Talented and Gifted||Dallas ISD||A+||100.0||100.0|
|2||School of Science and Engineering||Dallas ISD||A+||99.8||93.0|
|3||Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts||Dallas ISD||A||98.0||54.1|
|4||Rangel Young Women's Leadership School||Dallas ISD||A||99.6||48.7|
|5||School of Health Professions||Dallas ISD||A||100.0||46.2|
|6||Sanders Law Magnet||Dallas ISD||A||99.5||46.2|
|7||School of Business and Magement||Dallas ISD||A||99.6||38.9|
|8||Garza Early College High School||Dallas ISD||A||99.8||38.5|
|9||Texas Academy of Biomedical Sciences||Fort Worth ISD||A||99.0||39.4|
|10||Lassiter Early College High School||Dallas ISD||A||100.0||37.0|
|11||Plano ISD Academy High School||Plano ISD||A||99.2||38.2|
|12||Cedar Hill Collegiate High School||Cedar Hill ISD||A||99.3||37.7|
|13||Sorrells School of Education and Social Services||Dallas ISD||A||98.6||38.0|
|14||Waxahachie Global High School||Waxahachie ISD||A||98.3||37.2|
|15||Grand Prairie Fine Arts Academy||Grand Prairie ISD||A-||97.4||38.1|
|16||Mansfield Frontier High School||Mansfield ISD||A-||100.0||32.0|
|17||Steele Accelerated High School||Northwest ISD||A-||96.9||34.7|
|18||Gilliam Collegiate Academy||Dallas ISD||A-||96.6||34.2|
|19||New Tech High School at Coppell||Coppell ISD||A-||91.0||42.5|
|20||Obama Male Leadership Academy||Dallas ISD||A-||99.0||26.3|
Charter high schools
Generally speaking, any student can apply for admission to a Texas charter school, though the charter district's charter can specify certain restrictions. A typical example of this would be that a student must reside in a specific town or city in order to apply for admission. In most cases, the school's admissions policy also will describe its lottery process. A charter school must use a lottery process when the number of applications to the school exceeds the number of available spaces.
Top 5 Dallas charter high schools
|1||Uplift Education - North Hills Preparatory High School||Uplift Education||A+||95.5||75.3|
|2||Westlake Academy||Westlake Academy Charter School||A+||95.9||70.5|
|3||Imagine International Academy of North Texas||Imagine International Academy||A||93.9||59.4|
|4||Richland Collegiate High School||Richland Collegiate High School||A||99.2||37.9|
|5||Fort Worth Adademy of Fine Arts||Fort Worth Adademy of Fine Arts||A-||92.5||41.1|
A comprehensive list of Dallas area public high schools is provided on this Dallas schools page. Similar Dallas area elementary schools and middle schools student performance ranked lists are available on these best DFW public elementary schools and best DFW public middle schools pages. Schools with the best k-12 student performance are identified on this best DFW public k-12 schools page and rankings for area school districts are shown on this best DFW school districts page.
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