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Park City High School Didn’t Really Slip

I received an email from Ed Mulick, Co President of the Park City Educational Association, regarding Park City School District’s US News and World Reports rankings. As you may recall, PC High School wasn’t ranked this year in the top 6000 high schools in the US. This was a shock to many people across the community. Mr Mulick provides some background on that below and asks us all to step off the ledge. 🙂

Dear Park Rag,

Park City High School didn’t really slip.

A few weeks ago Newsweek released their annual high school rankings and, as has been noted by several people in the community and the Park Rag, Park City High School is no longer the top ranked school in Utah. It has slipped to #10. It is not even one of the top 2,000 in the nation. What happened?

Newsweek changed its ranking formula for determining top-performing high schools. The formula used to be pretty simple: the total number of AP exams given at the end of the year divided by the number of graduating seniors. For your information, those numbers have NOT changed.

Was original formula a fair way to rank the high schools in the first place . . . that’s open to question. The new formula is probably more inclusive and a better all around measure. Who knows? Obviously, Park City High School’s new ranking shows there is room for improvement.

Personally, I think people (i.e. realtors, parents, administrators, school boards, and teachers) put too much emphasis on rankings, which can be narrowly-defined and superficial. I think they’re over-hyped, especially when they come out in your favor.

I’m proud that Park City School District offers many excellent programs involving special education, English Language Learners, music, and other extracurricular offerings, programs that do not involve just high levels of academic accomplishment. It’s amazing what Park City School District offers for a 3A school. I’m not saying there isn’t room for improvement, but these are the programs that define our school district and, in my opinion, make it great.

Thank you for your time and attention to the issues facing our community regarding our public schools. . . . there is a lot on the table.

Ed Mulick
Co-President of PCEA


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