Education

SPAM To Blame for New Providence High School's Newsweek Ranking Omission

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NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ - There was a big omission in the recently published 2016 Newsweek magazine ranking of America's Top 500 High Schools by Newsweek magazine -- New Providence High School was not ranked.

In 2015, New Providence ranked 68th best among public high schools in the nation, just above Chatham High School [ranked No. 40 in 2016, best of NJ public high schools].

New Providence High School Principal Lauren Zirpoli confirmed to TAP into New Providence the Newsweek survey was never received. 

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The email went directly to the Spam folder -- a folder that is not checked. This is not uncommon -- Millburn High School [ranked No. 13 in 2015], Princeton, West Windsor, Tenafly and Mountain Lakes were also omitted. Last year, Gov. Livingston High School and Westfield High School were omitted for not receiving and filling out the survey.

"I feel very comfortable saying that we have always scored relatively high in the Newsweek rankings, as well as many other rankings," said Zirpoli. "And if I had received the email, I'm positive that we would have had similar results."

According to Westat’s website, an important criteria for a school to be included in the Newsweek ranking is a survey that is sent to each school as a part of their analysis.  This component measures a number of factors to include SAT scores, college acceptance rates and A/P enrollment.  Westat is a Newsweek high school rankings research partner.

Now that the school knows this can happen, they have set a feature in their system so the email will not be delivered as Spam. 

Zirpoli took it a step further and put a call to Newsweek to address the issue. "I want to address that this is an issue -- not only with this school, but with other schools with similar caliber as well," she said. 

Local Union County schools that made the list include Union County Magnet High School (No. 4), Academy for Allied Health Sciences (No. 21) and Academy for Information Technology (No. 23).

Stay tuned to TAP into New Providence for the announcement of the upcoming New Jersey Monthly rankings, where NPHS has been ranked as high as No. 6 in 2014 and No. 1 in 2012.

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