Poolesville High School Ranked “Best Public High School in Maryland” by Niche

by MCS Staff

Poolesville High School, the only whole school magnet in Montgomery County, was ranked as the “Best Public High School in Maryland” by Niche– a rankings and review resource that provides information on K-12 schools, colleges, cities, neighborhoods, and companies across the United States.

The core of the school building was built in 1911 as an elementary school, and as of 1912 the school was the only consolidated (middle and high school) in Montgomery County. The current school building dates back to 1953 but has had over 22 additions made since then, with the last major revision happening in 1978. John Pool Middle School was built in 1997, separating the two schools that were together for nearly a century.

Poolesville is in the midst of adding 160,000 square feet and renovating 60,000 square feet of the existing school. When completed in December 2024, the school, which currently has 1,274 students, will be able to house 1,500 students.

Starting in the 2006–2007 school year, students in  Montgomery County have the opportunity to become a part of one of three magnet programs called “houses”: Global Ecology; Humanities; or Science, Math, and Computer Science. Students test into high school during their last year of middle school and, if accepted and enrolled, are “certificate” students and are required to take the standard courses pertaining to their specific program.

Poolesville High School Montgomery County’s only whole magnet high school. Poolesville resident students (if they do not apply and join one of the other programs) automatically become part of a fourth program called the Independent Studies program or ISP, but are “non-certificate” and can choose to take specialized courses. The Independent Studies Program is specifically for Poolesville-resident students only and cannot be applied for by out-of-district students.

Per Niche: “While traditional rankings rely almost exclusively on metrics like test scores and academic performance, Niche’s rankings combine user input — ratings from current students, alumni, and parents — with quantitative data from sources like the U.S. Department of Education to evaluate teachers, resources and facilities, extracurricular activity opportunities and more. The 2023 Best Schools rankings include 2,906 newly ranked public schools, 1,018 newly ranked private schools, and 547 newly ranked school districts across the country.



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1 comment

Mary Adah September 28, 2022 - 8:55 pm

Correction– ISP students do actually have a certificate process, it is just more individualized than the other three houses, and is a voluntary process. But ISP students who complete their academic program with their approved courses and complete a senior project earn the ISP certificate and the purple ISP tassel at graduation.


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