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Santa Monica-Malibu Ranked Among California’s Top School Districts


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By Lookout Staff

August 22, 2017 -- The Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District has been ranked 29th on the 2018 list of Best School Districts in California by national academic ranking service, Niche.

The ranking -- which evaluated nearly 500 school districts across the state -- is based on "rigorous analysis of key statistics and millions of reviews from students and parents using data from the U.S. Department of Education," District officials said.

Factors taken into account for the Niche ranking include state test scores, college readiness, graduation rates, SAT and ACT scores, teacher quality, public school district ratings and more, according to the latest ranking report.

“We are honored to be recognized for the extraordinary achievements of our students and teachers,” said Superintendent Dr. Ben Drati.

“We are dedicated to providing the education and support all students need for success while in our classrooms and as they embark on college and career, in order to lead meaningful, engaged lives beyond our halls.”

Santa Monica High School earned an A+ for its educational outcomes, while Malibu High School earned an A.

The category includes academic data such as SAT and ACT scores with "special consideration given to schools whose students matriculate to high-ranked colleges and universities," District officials said.

Both schools also earned an A in "academics," which takes into account proficiency in math and reading, and graduation and college enrollment rates, as well as such factors as "facilities, safety, clubs (and) sports."

"Both SMMUSD comprehensive high schools boast proficiency rates that are well above county and state averages," SMMUSD officials said in a statement issued Monday.

"The schools also graduate 95 percent of their students -- rates that exceed county and state rates."

Other district schools earning an A grade were John Adams Middle School, Lincoln Middle School and SMASH middle school. All of the districts elementary schools earned an A or A-.

In addition to ranking schools, Niche also ranked the best places to teach in California, with SMMUSD placing 23 among 450 district. It ranked 41 among 472 districts for "best teachers in the state," officials said.


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