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Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Little Rock Central back on top of National Merit semi-finalist list for Arkansas

Posted By on Wed, Sep 11, 2013 at 6:07 AM

click to enlarge TOPS NATIONAL MERIT LIST: Little Rock Central High.
  • TOPS NATIONAL MERIT LIST: Little Rock Central High.

The annual list of National Merit Scholarship competition semi-finalists is out.

Little Rock Central High is back on top with 24 of the 150 in Arkansas, or nearly one in every six. Cabot High, with 11, had the next biggest number. The 150 represent less than 1 percent of the state's seniors and are chosen based on the PSAT test given in October 2012.

Of the semi-finalists, the overhwelming number came from public schools, but eight were home-schooled (I may be wrong but I think that's the highest number ever).

Here's the list of all winners.

In Pulaski County:

The Little Rock School District had 28 (24 at Central; 4 at Parkview); Pulaski County had 1 (at North Pulaski), and North Little Rock Senior High had one.

The eStem charter school had two; LISA Academy Charter/Little Rock had 2, and LISA/North Little Rock, had 1.

Among local private schools Episcopal Collegiate had 7; Little Rock Christian 6, Catholic High, 4; Central Arkansas Christian, 3, and Pulaski Academy, 1. There were three home-schooled semi-finalists in Pulaski County.

For concentration of talent, the selective admission residential Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences and the Arts in Hot Springs stood out as always. Ten of its 103-student senior class made the list.

Central's a large school, but population alone doesn't produce winners. Consider this list of the top 10 high schools in Arkansas, by enrollment figures of the Arkansas Activities Association:

1. Bentonville HS (6 Semifinalists)
2. North Little Rock HS (1 Semifinalist)
3. Cabot HS (11 Semifinalists)
4. Conway HS (5 Semifinalists)
5. Little Rock Central HS (24 Semifinalists)
6. Fayetteville HS (9 Semifinalists)
7. Springdale HS (0 Semifinalists)
8. Rogers Heritage HS (2 Semifinalists)
9. Rogers HS (2 Semifinalists)
10. Springdale Har-Ber HS (2 Semifinalists)
11. Ft Smith Southside HS (5 Semifinalists)
12. Bryant HS (1 Semifinalist)

Fayetteville High has often been at or near the top of the list, but dropped some this year. Part of the explanation might be the lure of the competing Haas Hall Academy, which had six semi-finalists.


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