Top 100 Best High Schools 2013– Northside College Preparatory High School – Newsweek – 25/100
GRAD RATE(%): 100
AP/IB TESTS: 1.4
COLLEGE BOUND(%): 99
AVG ACT: 29.2
SUBS LUNCH(%): 4
AVG AP SCORE: 4.3
NEWSWEEK SCORE: 3.88
5501 N Kedzie Ave, Chicago, IL 60625, United States
Northside College Preparatory High School (commonly referred to as Northside College Prep, Northside Prep, NCP, or simply Northside) is a public four-year selective enrollment high school located in the North Park neighborhood on the northside of Chicago, Illinois, USA. Founded in 1999, it was the first new CPS high school to be built in 20 years. It is a selective enrollment school, and teaches only at the Honors and AP levels (excluding the P.E. department). Northside has earned a reputation for academic excellence, and has been consistently ranked as the #1 public high school in Illinois by US News and World Report. As of 2013, it was ranked #33 in the nation by US News and World Report.
The school’s establishment, part of former Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley’s plan to reinvent the city’s public school system, generated controversy in the city and in the education community. The facilities were built with a $52.5 million budget that critics said could have better served other schools in city.
Admission to Northside Prep follows the selective enrollment application system. Factors considered in the application include a student’s grades from 7th grade, standardized test scores, entrance exam scores, and socio-economic status. As of 2012-2013, the demographic makeup of Northside Prep HS was 42.6% white, 24.4% Asian, 22.6% Hispanic, 6.3% black, and 0.7% Native American. As of 2012-2013, 35.5% of the school’s students were low-income, 6% were special education students, and 0.7% were limited English learners.
Northside College Prep is well known for the success of its students in the college admissions process, with over a quarter of the senior class gaining admission to the nation’s top universities. Over 99% of the graduating senior class matriculates to college. In addition, the student body as a whole earns a large amount of financial aid from various sources.
In 2013 Northside was rated #1 in Illinois and #33 in the nation by U.S. News and World Report
In 2011 Northside was rated #1 in Illinois and #24 in the nation by Newsweek
In 2013 Northside was rated the #2 public high school in the nation by “The Best Schools."
With the exception of physical education classes, all courses in Northside are either Honors or (AP) (Advanced Placement). Northside has 24 advanced placement classes.
Northside’s math program is unique from most other high schools in that it uses the Interactive Mathematics Program, also known as IMP, instead of a traditional math track. IMP is very writing based, with students writing portfolios and projects instead of simply solving mathematical equations. IMP is extremely different from a regular mathematics program, and like everything, it has its advantages and disadvantages. Aside from four IMP courses, Northside also offers College Math, AP Statistics, AP Calculus BC, AP Calculus AB, and Multi-Variable Calculus.
Northside also offers special education services for incoming students with diagnosed disabilities. The school’s Office of Specialized Services helps to arrange appropriate accommodations.
Given its extremely competitive academic environment, Northside successfully lobbied the Chicago Board of Education to eliminate class rankings. This effort was led by former principal Dr. James Lalley.