LAFAYETTE — The Early College Academy ranked among the top 500 high schools in the country on two separate lists released Monday by Newsweek.
The Lafayette Parish School System high school ranked No. 110 among 500 high schools on the publication’s “Beating the Odds 2014 — Top Schools for Low-Income Students” — that ranked high schools based on how well they serve students from low-income families. The high school ranked No. 239 among 500 high schools on the America’s Top High Schools 2014 list.
“I attribute this honor to the hard work of my teachers, my staff and the ECA students. They are exceptional,” ECA principal Anne Castille said.
The high school started in 2008 as a partnership with South Louisiana Community College. Students take classes at the college’s Lafayette campus and complete high school with a diploma and an associate degree in general studies.
Newsweek used data related to schools’ performances on state standardized tests, ACT and Advanced Placement course scores, enrollment and graduation rates, and student achievement by socioeconomic level for its rankings.
The ECA program has grown from 45 students in 2008 to more than 260 students. The construction of a new academic building on SLCC’s campus will help expand the academy to possibly 1,000 students, school and college officials have said.
The school plans to graduate 53 students this academic year — an increase from last year’s 37 graduates, college officials said in a news release.
Two other Louisiana high schools made the Top High Schools list: Benjamin Franklin High School in New Orleans ranked 63 and Thomas Jefferson High School for Advanced Studies in Gretna ranked 152.
Thomas Jefferson High School for Advanced Studies also made the list of the top 500 high schools that serve low-income students with a ranking of 42. West St. John High School in Edgard ranked 50 on that list.
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