Private schools continue to top Fraser Institute rankings

Think tank says its ratings are fair to all schools, public and private

More than half of B.C.’s 10 fastest improving secondary schools are outside the Lower Mainland, Fraser Institute rankings released Tuesday found.

The think tank ranks all public and independent schools each year, based on annual province-wide exams, grade-to-grade transition rates, and graduation rates.

This year, the fastest improving school was GW Graham Secondary, a public school in Chilliwack.

GW Graham was followed by Mount Elizabeth in Kitimat, Princeton Secondary, Charles Hays Secondary in Prince Rupert, J Lloyd Crowe in Trail, Caledonia in Terrace, Seaquam in Delta, South Kamloops Secondary, Johnston Heights in Surrey, and Stratford Hall in Vancouver.

The top rated school in the province remained York House, an independent school in Vancouver.

York House was followed by Crofton House in Vancouver, Little Flower in Vancouver, Southridge in south Surrey, and St. George’s in Vancouver. The top 10 schools in the province were all independent schools.

Despite past criticism that their rankings favour independent schools, the Fraser Institute said of the top 50 schools, 23 are public and 27 are independent.

“All too often, we hear excuses that public schools can’t compete with independent schools because of the communities and students that they serve, but that’s just not true — every school can improve and strive to rank higher than the year before,” said Peter Cowley, director of school performance studies.

The highest rated public school was Delta’s Seaquam, which came in twentieth.

The BC Teachers’ Federation has slammed the Fraser Institute’s rankings for years, and 2018 was no exception.

In a series of Twitter posts, the union called them “useless clickbait” and urged the province to better protect student data from “misuse.”


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