Several West Michigan high schools ranked very well on the Washington Post list of "most challenging high schools".

The annual rankings show nationwide leaders as well as statewide leaders.

It was a good showing for West Michigan in the 2014 report.

Standardized tests and lists like this one help to paint a picture of what is working and who is successful, but it's only part of the story.

No individual study provides all the answers, but each gives another piece to the puzzle.

The Washington Post describes how the "most challenging high schools" were ranked:

The index score is the number of college-level tests given at a school in the previous calendar year divided by the number of graduates that year. Also noted are the percentage of students who come from families that qualify for lunch subsidies and the percentage of graduates who passed at least one college-level test during their high school career

Utica Academy for International Studies in Sterling Heights was the top-ranked school in Michigan.

Here are West Michigan's top-ranking schools from the Washington Post report:

3 - Grand River Prep - Kentwood

4 - City High Middle - Grand Rapids

5 - Black River - Holland

10 - East Grand Rapids

15 - Lowell

24 - Mona Shores

26 - Plainwell

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