U.S. News lists D-B as No. 2 high school in NET, No. 16 in state

Rick Wagner • May 11, 2018 at 12:10 PM

KINGSPORT — Dobyns-Bennett High School has made U.S. News & World Report as one of the best high schools in the United States with a silver medal designation in the 2018 rankings.

That makes D-B the second-highest ranked school in Northeast Tennessee, behind University School in Johnson City, a limited enrollment school that also earned a silver, but ahead of Science Hill and Greeneville, both silvers, and Johnson County, Elizabethton, Unicoi County and Sullivan South, all bronzes. Statewide, Central Magnet School in Rutherford County was first in Tennessee with a gold medal and 44th nationally.

Among local schools:

University School, operated by East Tennessee State University but technically part of Washington County Schools, ranked 14th in Tennessee and 1,852th nationally, with a 100 percent graduation rate, a college readiness index of 31.7 and Advanced Placement participation of 42 percent.

Dobyns-Bennett ranked 16th in the state and 1,964th nationally, with a 96 percent graduation rate, 30.4 college readiness index and AP participation of 39 percent.

Science Hill ranked 24th in Tennessee and 2,698th nationally with a 91 percent graduation rate, 26.7 college readiness index and AP participation of 25 percent.

Greeneville ranked 23rd in Tennessee and 2,458th nationally and got a silver medal.

Out of the top 25 but still ranked were Johnson County at 33rd, Elizabethton at 34th and Unicoi County at 35th in the state. All earned a bronze medal.

Sullivan South was not ranked statewide but also got a bronze medal. It had a 99 percent graduation rate, a college readiness index of 6.8  and AP participation of 10 percent.


The new Best High Schools rankings, available online at usnews.com/education/best-high-schools/national-rankings, are produced in conjunction with North Carolina-based research firm RTI International, a global nonprofit social science research firm.

U.S. News has published detailed information on more than 20,500 public high schools, including school-specific data on enrollment, student ethnicity, location, school type and results of state assessments, as well as Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate tests. Using some of this data and a comprehensive methodology, schools were given a college readiness index score, with the top-scoring 5,900-plus schools receiving a gold, silver or bronze medal, and in the case of gold and silver schools, a national numerical ranking.


“The U.S. News & World Report rankings confirm what we always strive to achieve at D-B ... a high school experience that is exemplary and provides Kingsport families an educational environment that is among the best in America,” KCS Superintendent Jeff Moorhouse said. “While we don’t specifically set out to seek such awards, it is always encouraging to see the hard work of our students recognized as being truly excellent. We are proud of the leadership of D-B Principal Dr. Chris Hampton and his administrative team as well as the dedication of the entire faculty and staff who are being recognized for their exceptional work.”

Results of AP assessments factor into this national ranking. Approximately 775 Advanced Placement tests were administered to 432 D-B students in 2017. The number of seniors graduating from D-B in 2017 was 551. Seventy-two percent of Dobyns-Bennett students who completed an AP test scored at least a three or above. An AP exam score ranging from a three to a five qualifies students for college credit in the subject area.

“This recognition represents a culture of high expectations and teachers and students working diligently to meet and ultimately exceed those expectations,” Hampton said. “It is an honor to work in a community that supports education to the level Kingsport does.”

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