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Redondo Union One of the State's Toughest, Washington Post Says

Redondo Union High in Redondo Beach. Patch file photo.
Redondo Union High in Redondo Beach. Patch file photo.

Redondo Union High is one of the state’s more challenging high schools. So says the Washington Post.

To come up with the list of the nation’s most challenging high schools, the folks at the Post kept their calculation simple:

Number of college-level tests given at a school in the previous calendar year divided by the number of graduates that year.

Not that this methodology isn’t without controversy, especially because it doesn’t assign rank based on those who pass the exams, only those who take them.

But if you’re ready to take the list at face value, here’s where the schools stand.

Redondo Union is No. 268 on the list of 295 statewide. By the time seniors graduate there, almost 45 percent of them have passed a college-level exam.

In total, there are 1,304 public high schools in the state. There are another 268 charter high schools, according to figures from the California Department of Education. 

The Los Angeles Center for Enriched Studies in Los Angeles is the county’s top-ranked school on the list, coming in at No. 5.

Here’s how other school in the South Bay ranked:

  • Palos Verdes Peninsula in Rolling Hills Estates (No. 29)
  • Mira Costa in Manhattan Beach (No. 52)
  • Palos Verses in Palos Verdes Estates (No. 65)
  • Hawthorne Math and Science Academy (No. 118)
  • California Academy of Math & Science in Carson (No. 147)
  • South in Torrance (No. 197)
  • Amino Inglewood Charter (No. 205)
  • Narbonne in Harbor City (No. 213)
  • West in Torrance (No. 243)
  • North in Torrance (No. 244)
  • San Pedro (No. 250)
  • Torrance (No. 267)
  • Redondo Union in Redondo Beach (No. 268)
  • Banning in Wilmington (No. 273)
  • Carson (No. 292)

Tony April 17, 2014 at 03:10 AM
I don't understand. Is this good, or bad? 268 of 295 doesn't sound good, but your article makes it seems like it IS good. Confused.
Penny Arévalo April 17, 2014 at 03:15 AM
295 of the state's high schools made the list (i.e. they're considered challenging). There are 1,304 public high schools in the state. There are another 268 charter high schools. Those figures come from the California State Department of Education. I'm not sure the exact number of private high schools in the state, but as a rule about 10 percent of students attend private school. Hope that helps.
Bob Boren April 17, 2014 at 12:26 PM
Things haven't changed much since 1995 when I was checking out schools before moving back down here from Santa Clarita. My kids attended Mira Costa....I see it's still way at the top of the list. I came out of Torrance High myself....surprised that it's the last of the Torrance schools now. When I was going there (Graduated in 1972), West was #1, Torrance was #2, South was #3, and North was #4. That was a long time ago, of course. I will take one jab at Mira Costa. They really work hard to squeeze money out of the families of their students (beyond the Property tax they already pay). If you are bringing down half a million or more per year, fine. I was middle class living in North Redondo.....couldn't afford what they were asking for. Secondly, one of the reasons that Mira Costa's numbers are so good is that they kick kids out of that school if there is a risk that they will bring down their numbers. That happened to one of my kids who got into some very minor problems. I consider that NOT DOING YOUR JOB. If I were moving into the area now, I'd move closer to Redondo Union.

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