By Kavitha Cardoza
Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology in Alexandria, Virginia has been named the top high school in the country for the third consecutive year.
The U.S. News and World Report's Best High School rankings in 2010 looked at almost 22,000 schools across the country. And Thomas Jefferson again headed the list. Students can choose from course offerings that include Neurobiology, Oceanography and Astronomy.
Principal Evan Glazer says the students are highly motivated and passionate about learning. "Since we acknowledge that the students are very good test takers, it gives us the liberty to be more experimental in our curriculum and offer alternative programs," says Glazer.
Glazer says such programs emphasize research and problem solving, which help keep students motivated to do well.
Thomas Jefferson's student body of 1,800 is chosen through merit based applications. Minority students make up approximately 5 percent of the student body. One percent comes from low-income families.
High schools on the list were chosen based on performance in state tests, how the least advantaged student groups performed and college readiness. Langley High School in McLean, Virginia came in at number 47. No schools in D.C. or Maryland made the top 100.