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U.S. News & World Report Awards Bronze Medals to Gary Lighthouse Charter School

Gary Lighthouse Charter School is recognized by U.S. News & World Report in its annual national ranking of top performing schools for 2018. The rankings are based on each school’s performance on state-required tests and how well they prepare students for college. Both schools earned Bronze medals. More than 20,000 schools from across the 50 states and the District of Columbia were included in the analysis and rankings.

“Lighthouse Academies welcomes this prestigious recognition as a milestone in our relentless pursuit of excellence and as affirmation that our approach of incorporating the arts into the student experience, along with rigorous, standards-aligned instruction prepares students for life beyond high school and college graduation,” said Sarah Gallagher, Chief Academic Officer.

With a total enrollment of just under 1,500 students in grades K – 12, Gary Lighthouse Charter School boasts a graduation rate of 99 percent and a student-teacher ratio of 16 to 1. The student body is 88 percent Black and eight percent Hispanic, with the remaining four percent identifying as Asian, American Indian, Native Alaskan, or white.

Of schools earning Bronze medals, only 15 percent have a student poverty rate of greater than 75 percent and just 11 percent have a minority enrollment rate of greater than 75 percent. Nearly all students at Gary Lighthouse Charter School are eligible for free or reduced-price lunches. Minority enrollment is 99 percent at Gary.  

How National Rankings are Determined

The 2018 Best High School rankings were determined by the global nonprofit social science research firm RTI International and are based on two ideals:

  • That a great high school must serve all of its students well, not just those who are college bound.
  • That it must be able to produce measurable academic outcomes to show it is successfully educating its student body across a range of performance indicators.

A four-step process was used to determine that ranked schools serve all student well, as measured by student performance on the math and reading portions of their state proficiency tests and by their graduation rates. Schools that met those benchmarks were then assessed the degree to which they prepare students for college-level work. Basic data on enrollment, student ethnicity, and other profile information were obtained from the U.S. Department of Education. The data used in the 2018 rankings are for the 2015-2016 school year.





About Lighthouse Academies

Lighthouse Academies is a national network of public charter schools in locations with the greatest need, representing the greatest challenge and greatest opportunity for transformation.  With an arts-rich approach, Lighthouse teachers engage scholars in a more impactful way and encourage creativity of thought in academic pursuits. Through both academic development and broader personal development Lighthouse prepares scholars to adapt and thrive in college and in their broader communities.

For more information visit our website at

Contact the National Office, 29140 Chapel Park Drive Building 5-A, Wesley Chapel, FL  33543

Tel: 800-901-6943; 813-345-0856, Fax: 508-626-0905, Email: