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Best Public Schools 2018

Chicago Suburban Cook County Other Suburbs Principal Spotlights

The Best Public Schools in the Collar Counties

Published Sept. 10, 2018

Read about our methodology here.

Tap each school section below to see more, or read about our methodology here.

Top DuPage County Elementary & Middle Schools

Grades Enrollment Spending per pupil PARCC
attainment
5Essentials
1 Meadow Glens Elementary School
Meadow Glens has closed the standardized test achievement gap between boys and girls to within 1 percentage point, improving on the state average by 5 percentage points.
Naperville K–5 477 $8,574 86 56
2 Prospect School Clarendon Hills K–5 392 $10,776 79 n/a
3 The Lane School Hinsdale K–5 347 $10,776 82 n/a
4 Longfellow Elementary School Wheaton K–5 378 $8,089 77 79
5 Butler Junior High school Oak Brook 6–8 201 $9,971 80 77
6 Butterfield Elementary School Lombard PK–5 362 $9,383 70 56
7 Naper Elementary School Naperville K–4 242 $8,574 76 71
8 Madison School Hinsdale K–5 395 $10,776 76 n/a
9 Oak School Hinsdale PK–5 323 $10,776 79 n/a
10 Walker School Clarendon Hills K–5 271 $10,776 75 n/a

Top DuPage County High Schools

Enrollment Spending per pupil Freshmen on track SAT attainment Graduation rate
1 Hinsdale Central High School
Hinsdale Central adopted an emotional wellness program developed at Yale called RULER that helps students develop stress management skills.
Hinsdale 2.765 $12,862 99 77 95
2 Naperville Central High School Naperville 2.842 $8,574 98 71 99
3 Naperville North High School Naperville 2.738 $8,574 95 69 98
4 Metea Valley High School Aurora 2.853 $7,387 95 65 95
5 Glenbard West High School Glen Ellyn 2.322 10.669 93 58 97

Top Lake County Elementary & Middle Schools

Grades Enrollment Spending per pupil PARCC
attainment
5Essentials
1 Bannockburn School
In 2017, 100 percent of the students at Bannockburn passed Algebra 1, compared with 30 percent district-wide.
Bannockburn K-8 175 $12,972 71 65
2 Daniel Wright Junior High School Lincolnshire 5-8 821 $9,411 82 65
3 Walden Elementary School Deerfield K-5 458 $9,783 84 48
4 Kipling Elementary School Deerfield K-5 464 $9,783 78 80
5 Half Day School Lincolnshire 3-4 387 $9,411 79 70
6 Meridian Middle School Buffalo Grove 5-6 476 $9,377 73 67
7 Wilmot Elementary School Deerfield K-5 498 $9,783 81 56
8 Earl Pritchett School Buffalo Grove PK-4 580 $9,377 71 88
9 Lake Bluff Middle School Lake Bluff 6-8 330 $9,763 73 75
10 Country Meadows Elementary School Long Grove K-5 392 $8,291 65 67

Top Lake County High Schools

Enrollment Spending per pupil Freshmen on track SAT attainment Graduation rate
1 Deerfield High School
The graduation rate at Deerfield has remained above 95 percent for the past five years.
Deerfield 1,634 $14,609 97 78 99
2 Libertyville High School Libertyville 1,935 $14,190 98 77 99
3 Adlai E. Stevenson High School Lincolnshire 4,027 $11,704 97 78 97
4 Vernon Hills High School Vernon Hills 1,335 $14,190 99 68 98
5 Highland Park High School Highland Park 2,040 $14,609 89 67 92

Top Will County Elementary & Middle Schools

Grades Enrollment Spending per pupil PARCC
attainment
5Essentials
1 Eisenhower Academy
In 2016, Eisenhower was one of 16 schools in Illinois to be named a National Blue Ribbon School for exemplary performance among those serving low-income populations.
Joliet 1–5 261 $6,172 80 89
2 Hickory Creek Middle School Frankfort 6–8 848 $5,620 79 89
3 Jane Addams Middle School Bolingbrook 6–8 698 $8,208 54 86
4 Reed Elementary School Homer Glen 2–3 284 $8,375 64 52
5 Luther J. Schilling School Homer Glen K–4 658 $7,612 64 45
6 Freedom Elementary School Plainfield K–5 764 $6,036 58 77
7 Frankfort Square Elementary School Frankfort PK–4 218 $6,536 56 59
8 Troy Hofer Elementary School Shorewood K–4 468 $6,302 51 82
9 Walker’s Grove Elementary School Plainfield K–5 553 $6,036 60 56
10 Jonas E. Salk Elementary School Bolingbrook K–5 624 $8,208 43 46

Top Will County High Schools

Grades Enrollment Spending per pupil PARCC
attainment
5Essentials
1 Neuqua Valley High School
In 2017, eight Neuqua Valley High students earned top regional honors at the 24th Annual High School Video Festival.
Naperville 3,698 $7,387 97 78 97
2 Lincoln-Way East High School Frankfort 2,916 $7,119 96 62 98
3 Lincoln-Way Central High School New Lenox 2,157 $7,119 95 58 98
4 Romeoville High School Romeoville 1,886 $8,208 94 34 92
5 Lincoln-Way West High School New Lenox 1,898 $7,119 94 53 99

Top Kane County Elementary & Middle Schools

Grades Enrollment Spending per pupil PARCC
attainment
5Essentials
1 Fred Rodgers Magnet Academy
The Fred Rodgers Magnet Academy is textbook-free, with lessons taught via computers and interactive displays, and the school ensures that every student has a new laptop.
Aurora 3-8 448 $6,870 59 43
2 Bell-Graham Elementary School St. Charles K-5 407 $7,988 65 n/a
3 Richmond Intermediate School St. Charles 3-5 447 $7,988 51 n/a
4 Lily Lake Grade School Maple Park K-5 198 $6,435 61 85
5 Prairie Knolls Middle School Elgin 6-7 654 $6,435 62 77
6 Wild Rose Elementary School St. Charles K-5 496 $7,988 60 n/a
7 Wasco Elementary School Wasco K-5 373 $7,988 60 n/a
8 Munhall Elementary School St. Charles K-5 436 $7,988 56 n/a
9 Central Middle School Burlington 8 283 $6,435 62 72
10 Prairie View Grade School Elgin K-5 622 $6,435 60 89

Top Kane County High Schools

Grades Enrollment Spending per pupil PARCC
attainment
5Essentials
1 Geneva Community High School
Geneva Community High instituted a weekly student-teacher collaboration program that helps kids with everything from test prep to college searches.
Geneva 1,938 $7,160 97 68 96
2 St. Charles North High School St. Charles 1,985 $7,988 98 66 97
3 Batavia High School Batavia 1,929 $7,836 94 61 95
4 St. Charles East High School St. Charles 2,488 $7,988 95 55 95
5 Dundee-Crown High School Carpentersville 2,471 $5,961 83 30 88

Top McHenry County Elementary & Middle Schools

Grades Enrollment Spending per pupil PARCC
attainment
5Essentials
1 Woods Creek Elementary School
Teachers at Woods Creek had a 100 percent attendance rate in 2017, compared with the state average of 75 percent.
Crystal Lake K–5 577 $6,650 65 63
2 Conley Elementary School Algonquin 3–5 688 $5,468 58 66
3 West Elementary School Crystal Lake K–5 538 $6,650 57 49
4 Prairie Grove Junior High School Crystal Lake 6–8 253 $9,357 54 59
5 Fox River Grove Middle School Fox River Grove 5–8 205 $7,225 54 60
6 Husmann Elementary School Crystal Lake K–5 521 $6,650 55 59
7 Glacier Ridge Elementary School Crystal Lake PK–5 619 $6,650 55 n/a
8 Locust Elementary School Marengo PK–3 465 $4,765 38 75
9 Valley View Elementary School McHenry K–5 577 $8,179 44 51
10 Hilltop Elementary School McHenry K–3 457 $8,179 44 33

Top McHenry County High Schools

Enrollment Spending per pupil Freshmen on track SAT attainment Graduation rate
1 Cary-Grove High School
Cary-Grove has been named to the College Board’s AP District Honor Roll, which recognizes schools that increase access to Advanced Placement courses, for six years running.
Cary 1,746 $9,494 97 60 97
2 Prarie Ridge High School Crystal Lake 1,458 $9,494 96 59 98
3 Crystal Lake South High School Crystal Lake 1,527 $9,494 96 57 98
4 Crystal Lake Central High School Crystal Lake 1,545 $9,494 93 49 95
5 Richmond-Burton Community High School Richmond 726 $8,260 96 57 94
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