A new report issued by Bridge Magazine shows 52 Michigan public school districts and charter schools were named Academic State Champions for the 2011-12 school year.
Dearborn Public Schools ranked 15th in the state out of 560 charter schools and public school districts, according to Bridge's unique system of measurement. Districts were ranked based on schools' test scores adjusted for family income, showing where students are not only achieving but overachieving.
According to the analysis, a Value-Added Matrix score of 100 indicates students are achieving at expected levels for their income level. The higher a school's score, the better their students are performing on standardized tests.
Dearborn Public Schools received a score of 111.37. The highest ranking school—Star International Academy of Dearborn Heights—received a score of 120.48.
While the district is not a stand-out in terms of standardized testing scores, 14,000 of the district's 19,000 students are eligible for free or reduced lunch. Additionally, the 2011 American Community Survey released in December 2012 showed that 32.4 percent of Dearborn families with children under the age of 18 is living in poverty.
Dearborn Public Schools Supt. Brian Whiston said that while the ranking isn't the only one to measure success by, it was a good indicator that the district is succeeding despite socioeconomic obstacles.
"There are a lot of different ways to look at rankings," Whiston said. "This tells us that we are going above and beyond and students are doing well. It's one way to look at things."
To view a complete searchable database of schools, visit the Bridge Magazine website.