This week Niche released its 2024 Best Schools K-12 School & District Rankings, solidifying a decade of South Texas Independent School District (STISD) and its campuses ranking among the best in the state and nation in this poll.
With an A+ overall grade, STISD ranked 2nd in Texas (out of 1,052 school districts ranked) and 7th in the nation (out of 10,932 districts ranked) in the Best School Districts rankings. STISD earned the top spot in the Districts with the Best Teachers in Texas category, and brought home the second spot for Best Places to Teach in Texas. STISD also ranked 4th out of 11,466 districts ranked in the Districts with the Best Teachers in America.
All six STISD campuses eligible for the ranking were ranked among the best in the state and nation in the 2024 Niche K-12 Schools lists, which grade and rank schools and districts based upon criteria ranging from academics to culture and teachers.
STISD’s two middle schools earned spots at the top in the Best Public Middle School Teachers in Texas and Best Public Middle Schools in Texas categories. South Texas ISD Preparatory Academy (Preparatory Academy) in Edinburg ranked fifth in the Best Public Middle Schools in Texas (out of 2,259 schools ranked) and second in Best Public Middle School Teachers in Texas (out of 2,037). South Texas ISD Rising Scholars Academy (Rising Scholars) in San Benito earned first place in the Best Public Middle School Teachers in Texas category and 11th in the Best Public Middle Schools in Texas. Both campuses received an A+ overall Niche grade. In the Best Public Middle School Teachers in America, Rising Scholars ranked 12th and Preparatory Academy ranked 23rd out of 22,738 schools ranked. In the Best Public Middle Schools in America category, Preparatory Academy ranked 60th and Rising Scholars ranked 90th out of 25,491 schools ranked. In the Best Public Middle Schools in their counties – Hidalgo and Cameron – both campuses also claimed the number one spot.
All four STISD high schools also ranked among the top in the state and nation in the 2024 Best Public High Schools lists again this year. South Texas ISD Science Academy (Science Academy) in Mercedes ranked 5th in the state (out of 1,847) and 49th in the nation (out of 20,446), and received an A+ overall grade. The campus claimed first place in the Best Public High Schools in Hidalgo County. South Texas ISD Health Professions (Health Professions) in Mercedes ranked 46th in the state and 2nd in Hidalgo County, and received an A+. South Texas ISD Medical Professions (Medical Professions) in Olmito ranked 149th in the state, 2nd in Best Public High Schools in Cameron County, and received an A. South Texas ISD World Scholars (World Scholars) in Edinburg ranked 204th in the state, 5th in Hidalgo County, and received an A.
Marco Antonio Lara, Jr., Ed.D., superintendent of schools for South Texas ISD, expressed his excitement over the news of the most recent rankings, saying, “For a decade now we have consistently ranked among the best in the state and nation in the Niche rankings. This type of success does not happen by chance, but is rather the result of careful planning, hard work, and dedicated people throughout our community working collaboratively toward a common goal. Thank you, STISD community, for all that you have done and continue to do to promote student achievement.”
These are only a few of the categories by which Niche ranked campuses and districts. The following are links to access the detailed lists of district and campus rankings:
South Texas Independent School District: https://www.niche.com/k12/d/south-texas-independent-school-district-tx/rankings/
South Texas ISD Preparatory Academy: https://www.niche.com/k12/south-texas-isd-preparatory-academy-edinburg-tx/rankings/
South Texas ISD Rising Scholars Academy: https://www.niche.com/k12/south-texas-isd-rising-scholars-academy-san-benito-tx/rankings/
South Texas ISD Health Professions: https://www.niche.com/k12/south-texas-isd-health-professions-mercedes-tx/rankings/
South Texas ISD Medical Professions: https://www.niche.com/k12/south-texas-isd-medical-professions-olmito-tx/rankings/
South Texas ISD Science Academy: https://www.niche.com/k12/south-texas-isd-science-academy-mercedes-tx/rankings/
South Texas ISD World Scholars: https://www.niche.com/k12/south-texas-isd-world-scholars-edinburg-tx/rankings/
According to the company website, Niche has the most comprehensive data on U.S. K-12 schools, colleges, and places (neighborhoods, cities, ZIP codes, etc.). They rigorously analyze dozens of public data sets and over 100 million reviews and survey responses to help site visitors understand what a place is really like. Additional information on the methodology used for the grading and ranking is available on the Niche website here: https://k12.niche.com/rankings/methodology/.