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Posted on Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 2:26 p.m.

Saline High School ranked among the top 500 high schools in the country by Newsweek

By Kyle Feldscher

Saline High School is among the list of the top 500 high schools in the nation, according to Newsweek — coming in at no. 222.

The school was the fourth-highest ranked school in the state of Michigan out of a total of 16. Only the International Academy, an International Baccalaureate school in Bloomfield Hills, Andover High School in Bloomfield Hills and East Grand Rapids High School were ranked higher among Michigan schools.

Saline was also on the list in 2010, ranking 13th in the state and 1,073 overall. Ann Arbor high schools Pioneer and Huron were also on the list in 2010.

Saline Area Schools superintendent Scot Graden said the ranking was a result of a partnership among students, staff and parents and a reflection of the district as a whole.

“It’s a tribute to the K-12 process and the hard work going on at the elementary level is putting students on the right track for success in high school,” Graden said.

View the full list of schools on Newsweek's website.

Kyle Feldscher covers K-12 education for He can be reached at or you can follow him on Twitter.



Tue, Jun 21, 2011 : 10:22 p.m.

Hmmmm, full time salary + full time benefits = 8 months work + 4 months --- 10 week summer break, 2 week Christmas holiday break, 1 week spring break, President's longggg weekend, MLK Day, Thanksgiving break, Memorial Day (am I missing anything?).


Wed, Aug 31, 2011 : 2:01 a.m.

Why didn't (or don't) you become a teacher?


Wed, Aug 31, 2011 : 1:59 a.m.

How did this turn into a discussion against teachers? I have to say you ARE missing something. Let me enlighten. As a Saline High School and University of Michigan graduate who has been teaching in an inner city school for 5 years, I know the struggles and triumphs that good teachers embrace. (I also know Saline teachers are good at what they do.) First of all there are the state, administrative, parental and student expectations. With 100+ students that is a ton of pressure. Can we really meet each expectation? If you know the secret I would love to hear it. We can, and do, try. Yet I assure you there are plenty of critics sounding their complaints to "good" and "bad" teachers alike. Second, if you think teaching is a 9:00 to 5:00 job you are so wrong. Try for regular 10-12 hour days and bringing work home. There is little designated time to grade papers, plan meaningful lessons, conduct meetings, provide student interventions or contact parents within the school day. Wait! There is the forty-five minute planning period. (This is usually when I stop to finally pee, check my school emails and merely start on one of the other tasks.) Third, we live in a fast-paced, ever changing, challenging society. In order to keep the kids up to pace, teachers have to keep up as well. These "breaks" should be valued for what they are: breaks. Yet, they are also used for staff development, not worth any credit toward a degree. Teaching is very demanding, time consuming and stressful. Most teachers I know didn't get into teaching for the money or stability or even these "breaks". Most teachers I know started teaching because they wanted to make a difference. I like Edward's reflection, "Always amazed that people who complain about teachers' pay, benefits and schedules didn't become teachers." I feel the same way. I'd like all teacher critics to answer. If you are so envious of this lifestyle...why didn't (or don't) you b


Tue, Jul 12, 2011 : 2:56 p.m.

Exactly, make them do something in the summer for the community. Or maybe have them mow lawns or wax floors at the schools.

Dr. I. Emsayin

Thu, Jun 23, 2011 : 12:05 p.m.

Teachers pay for their own required graduate coursework, which is ongoing throughout their careers. They do this in the summer, often while updating the curriculum they teach. If teachers do summer work, they get paid about $15 an hour, and never for all of the hours they actually work because the district can't afford to pay for actual time worked. I have not heard of a teacher who really gets or takes 10 weeks off in the summer, just lazing around. At $60K a year, for 30 years, it isn't such a great package for a family to live on. Even at $70 after 20 years, it isn't so great for a family to live on. And considering many teachers have two master's degreees, it isn't comparable to what others make with that investment in education.

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Wed, Jun 22, 2011 : 1:34 p.m.

Always amazed that people who complain about teachers' pay, benefits and schedules didn't become teachers. Wonder why? Good Night and Good Luck


Wed, Jun 22, 2011 : 12:28 p.m.

RTG - you're missing out by making a different career choice!

Basic Bob

Wed, Jun 22, 2011 : 2:11 a.m.

People can really live this way? These teachers need to organize!


Tue, Jun 21, 2011 : 4:08 p.m.

Congratulations Saline for the good news. However, the future looks a bit grim. All sides seems to be entrenched in "old way" thinking and we cannot progress past the status quo it seems. It's a shame that we in the US spend so much money on defense and yet are happy to make cuts to education. Does the American public not realize that education is a national security issue? Great powers have great economies and great economics come from a well educated public. All parts of the public, from the rich suburbs to the poor inner cities. China is only too happy to see us punish our education system. It's also a shame that we are trapped into thinking the only way to improve education is to throw more money into it. It's not, it's a choice of priorities, standards and expectations. Clearly we must focus on achieving excellence and not mediocrity. Time to focus on pushing the brightest students, not slowing down to teach the slowest ones. It should be tough to get a high school degree and not everyone should get it if the don't earn it. The standard to meet is not Michigan or National standards but international ones. That is who we are competing against. It's a shame that we have not moved to a pay for performance based system for educators. Your raise, salary and bonus should be determined by your performance, evaluated yearly, not your years of service. When new positions open the best candidate should be chosen, not the one with the most seniority. You perform poorly, you are gone. You perform well, you are well compensated. It's also a shame that educators cannot accept that many of their benefits are not sustainable yet cling to them. Defined pensions, covering a minor share of their health care expenses, bank rolling sick days, automatic raises, summers off, extra pay for coaching sports, early retirement etc. These kinds of benefits are common in the public service sector and clearly cannot be sustained. The teaching profession has simply not accepted it yet.


Tue, Jun 21, 2011 : 12:55 p.m.

Where are all of the people who insist teachers are over-paid, under-worked, and have outrageous benefit packages?! "Teachers and their unions are wayyy out of touch with reality. Their benefits are ridiculous. I took a pay cut, so teachers have to take a pay cut too, because that is just the selfish person I am." Blah, blah, BLAH... Heaven forbid we pay teachers a meaningful wage with good benefits to attract young professionals to the field of education where they can replicate the success of Saline High School... Congratulations to Saline. And as we continue to debate the "problems" of education, perhaps we should take note of the fact that as Saline takes good care of their faculty, their faculty takes good care of their students. These results don't happen when the community constantly attacks teachers, diminishes the work they are doing, and tries to strip their pay and benefits.


Sat, Aug 27, 2011 : 3:22 p.m.

Tenure what outdated model for failure .


Tue, Jul 12, 2011 : 2:55 p.m.

Please, teachers need to sacrifice like everyone else. Colleges are producing more of them every year like any other job, so if they don't like it, they can move on.


Tue, Jun 21, 2011 : 12:34 p.m.

So, what's your point? Make us pay more taxes????


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 11:16 p.m.

Doubtful this will last!! You don't get what you don't pay for.

Will Warner

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 10:39 p.m.

Both my kids got an outstanding education in the Saline Schools. They graduated well-prepared for college and life, especially in writing, but also math. I would not be surprised to learn that more Hornets enter the UM engineering school each year than Pioneers or River Rats or Eagles.

Basic Bob

Wed, Jun 22, 2011 : 2:10 a.m.

You're partly right. Not a single Skyline Eagle has gone on to U-M. They will have their first graduating class in 2012.


Tue, Jun 21, 2011 : 1:46 a.m.

Actually, Huron has more kids at U of M (not sure about engineering) than any other high school in America. But I'm still happy for Saline. They are doing a good job.

John B.

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 9:53 p.m.

Let's see: This 'data' is from Newsweek, which has become a bastion of the white male, right-wing, facts-optional media. Hmmm.


Tue, Jun 21, 2011 : 2:59 a.m.

yeah right, thanks for the good laugh John B. Newsweek in support of the old white guy, Hah ! Good Day

DB Holden

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 8:28 p.m.

The success formula for Saline Schools is rooted in a community with parents who value education, motivated students, and a supportive faculty. The challenge moving forward is how to maintain quality education in a challenging economic environment. The current cost model is not sustainable with parents picking up more of the costs at a time when the parental pocket is getting lighter. Equitable and fair shared sacrifice, including the teachers union, will determine if Saline Schools can continue to excel. The alternative is less teachers, increased class sizes, and a diminished student experience.


Tue, Mar 20, 2012 : 9:50 p.m.

It's interresting that a school with 99% white kids can still have any success at all. Apparently diversity is required to have a successful learning environment.. at least that's what the pseudo-intellectuals are telling me. In fact, what is required for a positive learning environment is comfort and an open environment for the expression of ideas. If you feel at all intimidated to ask questions, respond thoughtfully, or be anything less than 100% engaged, that should be the #1 concern. All resources should be devoted to eliminating that which I just outlined. Class size is only relevant if some students feel intimidated by talking in front of large groups. We need to stop focusing on all of the several "means to the end" that exist out there and just focus on the end itself.


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 7:38 p.m.

This is gonna cause some bad feelings in Ann Arbor.................

Morph the Cat

Tue, Jun 21, 2011 : 1:22 p.m.

Mike, The good news is that it's just feelings. School systems must be proactive in the delivery of a quality education based on reason and student needs. No pandering to feelings.

Steve in MI

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 8:18 p.m.

...especially among those people who believe that Newsweek is capable of compiling meaningful rankings. Both of them.