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U.S. News and World Report Names Top 10 Illinois High Schools

Northside College Prep took top honors in Illinois as well as earned a national ranking

A national survey ranking the best public high schools in the country listed several Chicago schools as top in the state and a few as top in the country.

The U.S. News and World Report released its "Best High Schools" rankings on Tuesday. Northside College Prep was named the top high school in Illinois, and it also came in at No. 15 in the overall national ranking.

Northside College Prep, located in the North Park neighborhood, is a selective-enrollment school. The U.S. News and World Report highlighted the high school's "in-depth study" of physics, constitutional law and technology as well as its language classes, extracurricular activities and Advanced Placement classes. In the national ranking for magnet schools, Northside College Prep holds the No. 5 spot.

Walter Payton College Prep on the Near North Side also took a national ranking for magnet schools, coming in at No. 15. The report called out the high school's study abroad opportunities in France, Brazil, China and South Africa as well as its "de-stressing seminars," which include activities like horseback riding and Pilates, among its merits.

In the top 10 high schools for the state of Illinois, six of them are schools in Chicago. The other four are located in suburbs of Chicago.

The top ranked Illinois schools are, in order: 

  • Northside College Preparatory High School
  • Walter Payton College Preparatory High School
  • Jones College Prep
  • Whitney M. Young Magnet High School
  • Adlai E. Stevenson High School
  • Lane Technical High School
  • Deerfield High School
  • Highland Park High School
  • Prospect High School
  • Lincoln Park High School

The area where Illinois schools ranked the lowest was in the "Best Charter Schools" category. Only one Illinois school made it in the top 100 -- Uno Academy Charter Schools at No. 93.

Illinois also ranked a little lower in the "Best STEM Schools" category. Northside College Prep had the highest ranking at No. 29. The next closest was Adlai E. Stevenson High School at No. 46.

The U.S. News and World Report ranked schools nationally and by state and made separate lists for charter schools, magnet schools and STEM schools.

See a map below of the top 10 Illinois high schools.

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