Once again, the Poolesville Falcons are at the top of The Washington Post’s Best School Rankings!
When The Washington Post released its ranking of “America’s Most Challenging High Schools 2015” this week, Poolesville High School was ranked 5th among local (MD/VA/DC region) schools, 1st in the state of Maryland, and 83rd among 2,327 public and private schools in the United States.
Poolesville High School is the only whole school magnet in Montgomery County, and challenges its students through a rigorous curriculum and meaningful, motivated experiences. With four areas of concentration, Poolesville High School is similar to a college curriculum; students take general classes the first two years and focus on areas of interest the second two years. They have the option to choose between Global Ecology, Humanities, Independent Studies, or Science, Math and Computer Science. The whole school model engages and challenges students selected through an application process, as well as local school students interested in a magnet focus area. One student notes, “It’s not a competitive environment. People are competitive with themselves, not each other.”
“The difference here from other schools in the County and State is a sense of belonging for all students. The bottom line is we set out to make sure that there are opportunities for all students” says Billie Bradshaw, Magnet Coordinator for Poolesville High School.
Principal Deena Levine explains that the programs and coursework are challenging, authentic and rigorous at every grade level. Using real world examples and problems, students are constantly engaged and stimulated. Whether it’s setting the crime scene for a forensics class or developing a new product and sales pitch for a technical education class, teachers at Poolesville H.S. work with students to demonstrate how to be creative, while enjoying the challenges of problem-solving through these real world assignments. Levine explains, “It’s very welcoming, very open and encouraging for new students. Building relationships and building friendships are key components of what we offer at Poolesville.”
Since it is one of the smaller schools in Montgomery County, Poolesville’s teachers are able to focus on helping each student succeed in whatever area of study they are passionate about. The unique types of course work and programs help students prepare for entry-level college classes.
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