Make Smarter Decisions with Facts
We do not believe you can evaluate a school solely on test scores and subjective reviews. You need facts and that’s what we’ve found for you. We have diligently collected data from local school districts, State Departments of Education, the CollegeBoard, the National Center for Education Statistics, the California Interscholastic Federation, the Office of Civil Rights for the US Government and the University of California. Additionally, we are continuously looking to provide you with new data sources.
We work with some of the most brilliant education researchers, educators and parents to categorize these facts based on the predictors of a well-rounded education: academics, college readiness, course exposure, high level curriculum, enrichment programs and student support. Our goal is to make it easy for you to search for and find individual data points within various categories.
Our unique and proprietary algorithm consumes all these factors and provides you with various scores, weighted on a scale from 1-10, to help you understand the impact of a given school on your child’s future. We use Clifford Alelman’s research on academic intensity as a predictor of a student's future career and earnings as the foundation of our analysis. Adelman found that the academic intensity of a student’s high school courses was a better predictor of whether the student would complete a bachelor’s degree than class rank, grade point average, or test scores (Adelman, 1999, 2006).
We are currently presenting the most available data per school district for school year 2014-2015.
How Schoolie Scores Work
Below is a graphical representation of the factors that go into Schoolie’s Total Score. We also enable you to sort by each individual category so you can find schools that meet your child’s unique needs. As we continue to add new data sources and new changes schools are making, our scores will change.
High School Scores (Grades 9-12)
Explanation of a Few Factors used in Schoolie Scores:
Advanced Placement (AP) Program
The Advanced Placement or AP program, implemented by the College Board, offers college level curricula and exams to high school students.
Participation in an AP program prepares students for college, shows colleges that students are serious about education and enables students to earn college credit while still in high school saving money on tuition. AP courses are offered in the following subject areas:
- Math and Computer Science (Calculus, Computer Science, Statistics)
- Science (Biology, Chemistry, Environmental Science, Physics)
- World Language and Cultures (Spanish, French, German, Italian, Chinese, Japanese, Latin)
- History and Social Science (Government, US History, European History, World History Geography, Microeconomics, Macroeconomics, Psychology)
- English (Language and Literature)
- Arts (Art History, Music Theory, Drawing, 2-D Design, 3-D Design)
The exam score is based on the following 5 point scale:
5 extremely well qualified
4 = well qualified
3 = qualified
2 = possibly qualified
1 = no recommendation
High Level Math/Advanced Math
In 2014 Only 43% of ACT-tested graduates met the ACT College Readiness Benchmark in math. Math is critical for logic and problem solving and is the foundation of most other subject areas. Exposure to high-level math coursework is needed for college readiness and success. Schoolie considers courses at or above Algebra II as High Level Math courses. This includes pre-calculus, calculus, probability and statistics, integrated math as well as differential equations, finite and discrete mathematics.
“STEM” Defined and Explained
STEM is an acronym standing for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. In California there are nearly 900,000 STEM jobs, accounting for more than 13% of the nation’s overall STEM-related workforce. Yet, results from the National Assessment of Education Progress place California among the lowest five performing states in math and science proficiency. It is critical that students graduating from public schools are equipped to continue on with higher education STEM programs or enter the STEM workforce.
The number of STEM courses is the number of science, math, engineering and technology courses that a school offers. Schoolie uses the Department of Home Land Security’s list of STEM degrees as a guide as to what to consider as a STEM course.
The SAT Test
The SAT is a college admission test that measures a student’s knowledge and application of reading, writing and math. Many colleges and universities use the SAT to make admission decisions. Most students take the SAT during their junior or senior year of high school. The SAT exam is composed of the following three sections:
- Critical reading - reading passages and sentence completions
- Writing - short essay and multiple-choice questions on identifying errors and improving grammar and usage
- Mathematics - arithmetic operations, algebra, geometry, statistics and probability
Each college and university has their own unique criteria for admission.
Each section of the SAT is scored on a 200- to 800-point scale, for a possible total of 2400. The student also receives two “sub-scores” on the writing section: a multiple-choice score from 20 to 80, and an essay score from 2 to 12.
The California High School Exit Exam (CAHSEE)
The CAHSEE is an exam which all students, with the exception of certain students with disabilities, in California public schools must pass in order to receive a high school diploma. Its primary purpose is to significantly improve student achievement in public high schools and ensure that students who graduate from public high schools can demonstrate grade level competency in reading, writing, and mathematics.
The Student-Teacher Ratio is the average number of students per teacher at the school level. The lower this ratio is, the better the chances of students receiving personalized attention in the classroom. The average U.S. and California Student-Teacher ratios are 16 to 1 and 23 to 1, respectively.