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List ranks SFHS in best of state, nation
south entrance
South has been ranked 11th in the state and 327th in the nation in a Newsweek list. - photo by File photo
South Forsyth High School continues to move up the list of the nation’s top high schools.

The list, compiled by Newsweek magazine, ranks the top 1,500 schools based on a formula that divides the number of Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate or Cambridge tests taken by the number of graduating seniors.

Based on 2008 data, South Forsyth High School ranked 11th in the state and 327th in the nation. The previous year, South Forsyth was 12th in the state and 371st in the nation.

South Principal Jason Branch said the ranking is “great recognition for the hard work of our students, staff and parents.”

“It is also great recognition for the support that we receive from the entire community and the elementary and middle schools our students have attended,” Branch said. “We have a good group of students that work hard every day and are supported by some of the best teachers in the nation.”

Jay Matthews, an education editorial writer for the Washington Post, created the formula for determining rankings. He has said the test results are not included in the calculations, as they often are skewed or artificially high.

Northview and Chattahoochee high schools, both in the nearby Johns Creek area, also made strides on this year’s listing.

Northview ranked ninth in the state and 311th in the nation this year, as compared to 11th and 355th in the nation the previous year.

Chattahoochee posted similar gains. Though the school remained 19th in the state, Chattahoochee climbed from 540 to 532 in the nation over the past year.

Debbie Bell, Chattahoochee’s associate principal, said the school is “proud of the fact that our pass rate in our AP classes is typically 88 percent, which means that although we do offer a great number of AP classes, we’re very proud that our students do actually earn college credit when they take those classes.”

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