As you read through Niche's 2017 rankings of Best Private High Schools in Ohio, you will quickly find Western Reserve Academy at top of the queue. Named second best private high school in Ohio for the second consecutive year (the school was ranked #1 in 2014), WRA has once again received distinction as a top private school in the state. WRA was also included on Niche's list of the country's best boarding schools, coming in at #26.
"We are proud of our recurring high standing on the Niche list and on other state and national rankings," said Head of School Christopher D. Burner '80. "This is a transformational time at WRA, as we evolve our curriculum to provide an unequalled educational experience for our students where they question, research, make, challenge and do according to their unique visions and voices."
This recognition joins a growing list of accolades that honor defining characteristics of this institution, including its notable college preparatory program, its wealth of diversity and its national placement in the top 50 boarding schools in the country. Niche's best private high school rankings are collected through a thorough study of statistics, student and parent reviews and a fixed set of factors, which include SAT/ACT scores, college matriculation and more.
What makes WRA stand out, however, is not only measured by high test scores and a 100 percent matriculation rate. The school's academic momentum has increased through a broadening curriculum and the introduction of new intellectual spaces on its campus:
- The new Center for Technology, Innovation & Creativity, a 6,000-square-foot makerspace located in the school's Knight Fine Arts Center, has equipped and emboldened students to problem-solve, think critically and creatively, and take ideas from concept to creation.
- WRA's Compass course invites students to turn a personal passion into a yearlong project, such as Paul Schumacher's '17 construction of the Star Room to help children with autism.
- Saturday Academy and the Beyond Reserve program allow students to study areas of interest in depth and experience enriching domestic and international internships.
At Reserve, students can explore topics that inspire and interest them from the introductory to the college level, such as an intensive Cancer Immunology course in the campus' cutting-edge laboratory. They are guided under the instruction of a world-class faculty, 91 percent of whom hold advanced degrees.
While Niche reports to have based their rankings on numbers and analytics, on the school's Niche profile, you will find evidence that WRA is not only a place where students can thrive academically, it is a place with culture, diversity and history, and a warm, supportive environment. Students are guided by school values of excellence, integrity and compassion, and they appreciate the school's traditions — from attending Vespers in the Chapel to ringing the Victory Bell after athletic wins — as well as its focus on preparedness for college and the world ahead.
It is all of this and more that defines the Reserve experience and secures the school's consistent ranking among the best high schools in the state and the country.