U.S. News analyzed data from more than 20,500 schools across the county to determine the rankings.
Examining whether each school's relative performance in its state reading and mathematics assessments exceeded expectations, factoring in the proportion of its student body that is economically disadvantaged and projected to score lower.
Ocean Springs College Readiness Index score of 33.3 was tops in MS and far exceeded that of all other Jackson County schools, with Pascagoula High School the next highest at 18.8. It recognized 5,948 top-performing schools with numeric rankings, and awards of gold, silver or bronze, depending on their level of college readiness.
St. Charles North came in at no. 18 and and St. Charles East at no. 23, according to the national magazine's annual list, released Wednesday. Magnet high schools are public schools that attract top-rated students in a region.
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The top nationally ranked schools were all BASIS charter schools in Arizona. Of those higher ranking: 13 are NYC Public Schools, 2 are in Westchester County, 1 on Long Island.
Davis is Utah's second-largest school district, with more than 72,000 students.
To pass the first step, a school had to be "one-third of one standard deviation above the average".
Cassen noted that the district's rankings aren't a goal in themselves, but the result of efforts to prepare students to graduate from high school and move onto jobs or college.
This year's rankings were a significant improvement over last year, when PMSA was ranked 32 in the state and 1,044 nationally, and received a Silver medal.