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The Washington Post Lists The Gatton Academy as a Top Performing School for 9th Consecutive Year

The Washington Post Lists The Gatton Academy as a Top Performing School for 9th Consecutive Year

The Carol Martin Gatton Academy of Mathematics and Science in Kentucky at WKU has been named to The Washington Post’s list of top-performing schools with elite students for the ninth consecutive year.

Since 1998, educational columnist Jay Mathews has ranked Washington-area public high schools using the Challenge Index, his measure of how effectively a school prepares its students for college. The Washington Post has since expanded its research and rankings to high schools across the United States.

The Challenge Index is designed to recognize schools that challenge average students. Thirty top-performing schools, including The Gatton Academy, were excluded from the regular list because, as the newspaper states, “their admission rules and standardized test scores indicate they have few or no average students.” Instead, these schools are named to the list of top performing schools with elite students.

Once again, The Gatton Academy found itself among the nation’s 30 most distinguished public high schools.  Schools such as the Arkansas School for Mathematics, Science and the Arts, the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy, the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics, and Thomas Jefferson High School make perennial appearances on the top-performing schools with elite students list.

“We are excited and honored to be considered among the best schools in the country. We are proud to represent Kentucky’s commitment to education,” said Director of The Gatton Academy, Dr. Lynette Breedlove.  “The Gatton Academy’s unusual model provides bright, highly motivated students with the academic rigor they crave and the social-emotional support they need.  Our school’s success is shared with schools and districts across the Commonwealth that prepare students for our environment and with WKU faculty and staff who challenge our students in their college classrooms.”

The Washington Post’s recognition highlighted the strategic partnership between The Gatton Academy and WKU. Gatton Academy students earn more than 60 hours of college credit from WKU during their four semesters in the program while also earning a high school diploma.

 “Being recognized as a top performing school with elite students for nine of our ten years is quite noteworthy,” stated Dr. Julia Roberts, Executive Director of The Gatton Academy and Mahurin Professor of Gifted Eduation.  “WKU faculty, teachers at the student’s sending schools, and the staff at The Gatton Academy are to be commended for this recognition.”  

To see the full school list, please visit

Contact: Zack Ryle, (270) 745-2971

About The Gatton Academy: Established in 2007, The Gatton Academy is Kentucky’s first residential high school for gifted and talented junior and seniors. The Gatton Academy’s students enroll as juniors and are full-time WKU students pursuing their interests in advanced science, technology, engineering and mathematical careers. The Gatton Academy has been named to the Washington Post’s list of top-performing schools with elite students for nine consecutive years and was named the number one public high school in the United States by The Daily Beast for three consecutive years – 2012, 2013 and 2014.

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 Last Modified 5/2/17