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Westwood on National Top 10 School List

by Dave Atkins

GreatSchools, a national nonprofit that collects and publishes education data to inspire and guide parents towards improving their schools and strengthening their communities has featured Westwood as one of the top public school systems in small U.S. cities.

Year after year, Westwood students score in the top percentiles on national reading and math tests, and an overwhelming majority of high school graduates continue to college. But it’s not all work, no play: There’s an abundance of recreational areas, nature preserves, playgrounds, and ball fields.

GreatSchools is much more than just another U.S. News annual ranking. I worked with founder Bill Jackson in 1996 when we developed He went on to create GreatSchools based on the idea that shared information would empower parents, teachers, and communities to look for ways to measure, analyze, and chart the improvements in their schools. Long before "No Child Left Behind" or, more recently the Obama administration's "Race to the Top" program came along, Great Schools was laying the foundation for local efforts to improve education. Being featured as a top school nationally is much more than simply having the highest MCAS/income-correlated pass rates--it reflects the comprehensive commitment to education in the town of Westwood and is a recognition everyone should be proud of.