Alternative Perspectives: School Rankings

Mahee Gandhi Latin is consistently ranked among the top private schools in the city and country, most recently by Niche.com. But perhaps school rankings, even our own, aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. Freshman Mahee Gandhi shares her thoughts. School rankings claim to tell us the statistics of why certain schools provide a higher quality of education than others. Whether it’s the search for the highest rankings amongst colleges, universities, or private versus public schools, people around the nation use high profiled websites such as Niche.com to explore rankings of nationwide schooling. Not only do websites provide false information, but they spread the false stereotype that nationally recognized school will produce “nationally recognized” students. School rankings are just a number. It’s not the school that determines the abilities of a student, it’s the student. The internet is a part of an endless search containing highly biased content. That being said, school rankings can ease a student’s transition into selecting which high school or college they would like to attend. Websites like Niche are too subjective and prejudiced in terms of the schools and do not focus on the students within them. Ultimately, most students just end up being more confused in the endless fight between what colleges are the highest ranked accorded to Niche and where they truly want to go. The pressure of peers, parents, and most importantly, school rankings, can force a student to think a highly ranked school is right for them, when in fact, it could be quite the opposite. Then why do rankings even exist? Ultimately, rankings are there to benefit schools. The hidden truth to why rankings exist is to honor prestigious institutions. A school’s academic quality is determined by the ambition and atmosphere of students. High profiled schools can change what websites like Niche and U.S. News have to say about their education. What students and parents don’t understand is that websites are biased to be selective towards the content they publicly post. If you’ve got high ambition, incentive to get good grades, and a willingness to participate in activities you enjoy, no matter what college you go to, you have the ability to succeed. So think twice before using websites like U.S. News and Niche for the college or high school selection process, because rankings can be a blindfold to the true standing of ambition and education out there. ]]>