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2016 Best Public Schools
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The Best Public Schools in Chicago’s Suburbs

How we ranked the schools

Published Aug. 22, 2016

Suburban Cook County

Top 20 Elementary Schools

Grades Enrollment Spending per Pupil PARCC
Attainment*
5Essentials Attendance
1 Middlefork Primary School
In 2015, Middlefork earned a 95 (out of a possible 99) for “family involvement” in the 5Essentials teacher-student survey.
Northfield PK–3 206 $16,091 81 4.0 98
2 MacArthur International Spanish Academy Hoffman Estates K–6 389 $8,797 67 5.0 96
3 Sunset Ridge School Northfield 4–8 285 $16,091 75 4.0 97
4 Shabonee School Northbrook 3–5 427 $13,144 79 n/a 96
5 Enders-Salk Elementary School Schaumburg K–6 498 $8,797 54 5.0 96
6 Hoover Math And Science Academy Schaumburg K–6 697 $8,797 73 5.0 96
7 Thomas Dooley Elementary School Schaumburg K–6 407 $8,797 78 5.0 96
8 Fairview Elementary School Hoffman Estates K–6 554 $8,797 75 4.0 96
9 Orchard Place Elementary School Des Plaines PK–5 314 $9,792 36 n/a 96
10 Everett Dirksen Elementary School Schaumburg K–6 414 $8,797 71 5.0 96
11 Hynes Elementary School Morton Grove PK–4 346 $7,541 72 n/a 96
12 Lakeview Elementary School Hoffman Estates K–6 539 $8,797 52 5.0 95
13 Glen Oaks Elementary School Hickory Hills 2–5 680 $7,005 49 n/a 96
14 Meadowbrook Elementary School Northbrook PK–5 379 $13,182 69 n/a 96
15 Sieden Prairie Elementary School Matteson K–5 275 $7,435 40 4.0 96
16 Elizabeth Blackwell Elementary School Schaumburg K–6 452 $8,797 60 3.5 96
17 Westmoor Elementary School Northbrook PK–5 317 $13,182 70 n/a 95
18 Lincoln Prairie School Hoffman Estates K–8 384 $8,797 75 4.5 96
19 Michael Collins Elementary School Schaumburg K–6 638 $8,797 69 5.0 96
20 Frederick Nerge Elementary School Roselle K–6 554 $8,797 70 5.0 96
* Figures do not reflect low-income adjustment.

Top 20 High Schools

Enrollment Spending per Pupil Freshmen on Track ACT
Attainment*
5Essentials Graduation Rate
1 Proviso Math And Science Academy (S)
This 11-year-old near-west suburban magnet, which has a 58 percent low-income student population, has boasted a 100 percent graduation rate for the past three years.
Forest Park 751 $7,661 95 75 n/a 100
2 New Trier High School Northfield/Winnetka 4,099 $13,829 98 92 n/a 99
3 John Hersey High School Arlington Heights 1,949 $11,820 93 78 n/a 92
4 Glenbrook South High School Glenview 2,914 $13,327 97 77 n/a 96
5 William Fremd High School Palatine 2,750 $10,773 97 81 3.0 96
6 Evanston Township High School Evanston 3,230 $11,817 92 65 n/a 89
7 Rolling Meadows High School Rolling Meadows 2,011 $11,820 88 64 n/a 91
8 Glenbrook North High School Northbrook 2,051 $13,327 96 86 n/a 97
9 Prospect High School Mount Prospect 2,214 $11,820 93 79 n/a 94
10 James B. Conant High School Hoffman Estates 2,409 $10,773 96 66 n/a 96
11 Buffalo Grove High School Buffalo Grove 1,985 $11,820 95 68 n/a 93
12 Schaumburg High School Schaumburg 2,395 $10,773 93 60 3.5 92
13 Oak Park and River Forest High School Oak Park 3,294 $13,378 91 68 4.0 94
14 Niles North High School Skokie 2,159 $12,395 87 55 n/a 92
15 Hoffman Estates High School Hoffman Estates 1,919 $10,773 93 46 n/a 93
16 Palatine High School Palatine 2,710 $10,773 90 52 4.5 88
17 Niles West High School Skokie 2,593 $12,395 81 59 n/a 94
18 Maine East High School Park Ridge 1,859 $12,450 93 50 n/a 84
19 Elk Grove High School Elk Grove Village 1,993 $11,820 94 61 n/a 92
20 Lyons Township High School LaGrange 4,032 $10,119 94 74 n/a 92
(S) selective enrollment
*Figures do not reflect low-income adjustment.

DuPage County

Top 10 Elementary Schools

Grades Enrollment Spending per Pupil PARCC
Attainment*
5Essentials Attendance
1 Meadow Glens Elementary School
The U.S. Department of Education recognized Meadow Glens as a National Blue Ribbon School in 2015, one of just 335 honored nationwide.
Naperville K–5 447 $8,259 83 4.0 97
2 Longfellow Elementary School Wheaton K–5 398 $7,740 77 4.0 96
3 Clarence E. Miller Elementary School Westmont K–5 169 $10,788 44 3.0 96
4 Schiesher Elementary School Lisle K, 3–5 418 $10,994 55 n/a 95
5 Manor Hill Elementary School Lombard K–5 270 $8,932 65 4.0 92
6 Oak School Hinsdale PK–5 258 $9,461 80 4.0 95
7 Hawthorne Elementary School Wheaton K–5 297 $7,740 58 4.0 96
8 Brook Forest Elementary School Oak Brook K–5 322 $10,080 76 3.5 96
9 Naper Elementary School Naperville K–5 309 $8,259 68 3.5 96
10 Charles G. Reskin Elementary School Glendale Heights PK–5 486 $8,496 33 n/a 95
* Figures do not reflect low-income adjustment.

Top 5 High Schools

Enrollment Spending per Pupil Freshmen on Track ACT
Attainment*
5Essentials Graduation Rate
1 Lisle High School
Nearly all of Lisle High’s ninth graders­—97 percent—are “on track,” meeting academic benchmarks that are strong predictors of on-time graduation.
Lisle 532 $10,994 97 63 n/a 94
2 Wheaton North High School Wheaton 2,163 $7,740 92 71 5.0 91
3 Hinsdale Central High School Hinsdale 2,813 $12,357 99 87 n/a 95
4 Metea Valley High School Aurora 2,799 $7,183 95 71 4.0 97
5 Naperville Central High School Naperville 2,930 $8,259 98 77 4.5 96
* Figures do not reflect low-income adjustment.

Kane County

Top 10 Elementary Schools

Grades Enrollment Spending per Pupil PARCC
Attainment*
5Essentials Attendance
1 Fred Rodgers Magnet Academy (S)
A $660,000 grant from the Dunham Fund, a local philanthropic foundation, allows every student access to a new laptop to use in class and at home.
Aurora 3–8 431 $6,569 58 3.0 94
2 Bell-Graham Elementary School St. Charles K–5 442 $7,500 72 n/a 96
3 Fox Ridge School St. Charles PK–5 360 $7,500 60 n/a 96
4 Wild Rose Elementary School St. Charles K–5 489 $7,500 66 n/a 96
5 Grace McWayne Elementary School Batavia K–5 428 $7,375 67 n/a 96
6 Corron Elementary School South Elgin K–5 469 $7,500 66 n/a 96
7 Glenbrook Elementary School† Streamwood K–6 576 $6,095 43 5.0 96
8 Munhall Elementary School St. Charles K–5 470 $7,500 58 n/a 96
9 Ferson Creek School St. Charles PK–5 519 $7,500 63 n/a 96
10 Lincoln Elementary School St. Charles PK–5 275 $7,500 58 n/a 96
(S) selective enrollment
* Figures do not reflect low-income adjustment.
†Located in a neighboring county but part of a Kane County–based district

Top 5 High Schools

Enrollment Spending per Pupil Freshmen on Track ACT
Attainment*
5Essentials Graduation Rate
1 Geneva Community High School
Eighty-seven percent of the educators at this west suburban school hold a master’s degree or higher, and 20 percent of the Class of ’15 were Illinois State Scholars.
Geneva 1,996 $6,899 97 78 3.5 98
2 St. Charles East High School St. Charles 2,563 $7,500 94 72 n/a 91
3 Batavia High School Batavia 2,023 $7,375 94 73 n/a 91
4 St. Charles North High School St. Charles 2,032 $7,500 98 72 n/a 97
5 Harry D. Jacobs High School† Algonquin 2,150 $5,625 93 63 2.0 89
* Figures do not reflect low-income adjustment.
†Located in a neighboring county but part of a Kane County–based district

Lake County

Top 10 Elementary Schools

Grades Enrollment Spending per Pupil PARCC
Attainment*
5Essentials Attendance
1 Half Day School
Students at Half Day have access to a 15-acre natural area on the Des Plaines River, established by the district’s all-volunteer Learning Fund Foundation.
Lincolnshire 3–4 347 $8,654 83 3.5 97
2 Grove Avenue Elementary School† Barrington K–5 548 $9,654 74 3.5 96
3 Country Meadows Elementary School Long Grove K–5 404 $7,801 64 4.0 96
4 Earl Pritchett Elementary School Buffalo Grove PK–4 551 $9,008 72 3.5 96
5 Walden Elementary School Deerfield K–5 451 $10,125 82 2.0 96
6 Kipling Elementary School Deerfield K–5 516 $10,125 75 3.5 97
7 Arnett C. Lines Elementary School† Barrington K–5 487 $9,654 68 2.5 96
8 Roslyn Road Elementary School Barrington K–5 426 $9,654 64 4.0 96
9 Lake Bluff Elementary School Lake Bluff PK–5 552 $10,538 69 3.0 95
10 Cherokee Elementary School Lake Forest K–4 329 $9,145 75 n/a 96
* Figures do not reflect low-income adjustment.
†Located in a neighboring county but part of a Lake County–based district

Top 5 High Schools

Enrollment Spending per Pupil Freshmen on Track ACT
Attainment*
5Essentials Graduation Rate
1 Libertyville High School
As of 2015, the vast majority of Libertyville High School seniors—94 percent—enrolled in college within 16 months of graduation.
Libertyville 2,022 $13,116 98 84 4.5 94
2 Vernon Hills High School Vernon Hills 1,303 $13,116 96 79 5.0 94
3 Lake Forest High School Lake Forest 1,684 $13,360 96 86 n/a 92
4 Adlai E. Stevenson High School Lincolnshire 3,906 $11,233 95 85 4.5 95
5 New Tech High School at Zion Benton East Zion 339 $8,037 74 43 2.0 99
* Figures do not reflect low-income adjustment.

McHenry County

Top 10 Elementary Schools

Grades Enrollment Spending per Pupil PARCC
Attainment*
5Essentials Attendance
1 Edgebrook Elementary School
The teacher response rate on the 5Essentials survey at Edgebrook was 99.9 percent in 2015.
McHenry K–3 546 $7,138 37 4.0 95
2 Indian Prairie Elementary School Crystal Lake K–5 542 $6,186 53 4.0 95
3 Locust Elementary School Marengo PK–3 531 $4,708 38 4.0 95
4 Woods Creek Elementary School Crystal Lake K–5 572 $6,186 59 3.5 96
5 Riley Community Consolidated School Marengo K–8 310 $6,829 47 2.0 97
6 Mary Endres Elementary School Woodstock 1–5 492 $6,593 29 3.5 96
7 Ulysses S. Grant Intermediate School Marengo 4–5 216 $4,708 40 1.5 95
8 South Elementary School Crystal Lake K–5 402 $6,186 48 2.5 95
9 West Elementary School Crystal Lake K–5 577 $6,186 49 2.5 95
10 Briargate School Cary PK–5 453 $5,408 54 n/a 96
* Figures do not reflect low-income adjustment.

Top 5 High Schools

Enrollment Spending per Pupil Freshmen on Track ACT
Attainment*
5Essentials Graduation Rate
1 Woodstock High School
The Washington Post put Woodstock on its list of America’s “most challenging” high schools, based on the proportion of students taking AP and other college-prep tests.
Woodstock 971 $6,593 92 54 3.5 92
2 Cary-Grove High School Cary 1,820 $8,966 97 71 4.5 96
3 Prairie Ridge High School Crystal Lake 1,481 $8,966 92 72 4.5 97
4 Crystal Lake Central High School Crystal Lake 1,536 $8,966 94 60 3.5 95
5 Crystal Lake South High School Crystal Lake 1,797 $8,966 94 62 4.5 96
* Figures do not reflect low-income adjustment.

Will County

Top 10 Elementary Schools

Grades Enrollment Spending per Pupil PARCC
Attainment*
5Essentials Attendance
1 Eisenhower Academy
One hundred percent of fourth graders at Eisenhower Academy met or exceeded state standards on the science section of the 2013 ISAT (PARCC’s predecessor).
Joliet 1–5 262 $5,556 68 4.0 97
2 Anna McDonald School Manhattan 3–5 453 $4,448 61 4.0 96
3 Goodings Grove School Homer Glen PK, 1–4 464 $7,618 45 4.0 96
4 Freedom Elementary School Plainfield K–5 821 $5,658 56 3.5 96
5 Pioneer Elementary School Bolingbrook K–5 795 $7,489 46 3.0 96
6 William J. Butler School Lockport PK, 1–4 625 $7,618 51 3.0 96
7 Luther J. Schilling School Homer Glen K–4 433 $7,618 50 2.5 96
8 Coretta Scott King Magnet School University Park K–6 332 $6,305 37 4.0 96
9 Ludwig Elementary School Lockport 4–5 393 $7,099 47 3.5 96
10 Three Rivers School Channahon 5–6 287 $4,937 50 5.0 96
* Figures do not reflect low-income adjustment.

Top 5 High Schools

Enrollment Spending per Pupil Freshmen on Track ACT Attainment* 5Essentials Graduation Rate
1 Lincoln-Way East High School
Lincoln-Way East earned the highest possible score—99—for professional development on the 5Essentials teacher-student survey.
Frankfort 2,182 $7,023 96 71 5.0 96
2 Lincoln-Way Central High School New Lenox 1,900 $7,023 97 66 5.0 96
3 Romeoville High School Romeoville 1,894 $7,489 93 38 2.5 89
4 Lincoln-Way West High School New Lenox 1,304 $7,023 95 68 n/a 96
5 Lockport Township High School Lockport 3,670 $7,680 83 60 2 93
* Figures do not reflect low-income adjustment.

How We Ranked the Schools

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