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SAISD’s Young Women’s Leadership Academy named among the top 1 percent of high schools in the nation
April 21, 2022 – The Young Women’s Leadership Academy in San Antonio ISD has earned the distinction of being among the top high schools in the United States. Results were published today in the Jay Matthews Challenge Index, which bills itself as the oldest high school ranking system in the country – beginning in 1998 in both Newsweek and The Washington Post. YWLA earned a ranking of 20 out of the top 300 high schools in the nation.

YWLA ranked the highest among all San Antonio schools that earned a spot on the list. Locally, five San Antonio high schools ranked, and 56 high schools in Texas made the list.

“We attribute this ranking to our teachers, who dedicate themselves in providing systems of support for our young women. They educate the whole child in body, mind, and spirit,” said YWLA Network Head of Schools Delia Montelongo-McLerran. “We are grateful to our many private partners who make the impossible a reality for 100% of our young women!”

According to the ranking website, The Challenge Index is the only list that compares both private and public schools together.

The Challenge Index ranks high schools by a simple ratio: the number of Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate or Cambridge tests given at a school each year, divided by the number of seniors who graduated that year. Schools ranked no. 220 or above are in the top 1 percent of America’s 22,000 high schools and those ranked no. 440 or above are in the top 2 percent.

Earlier this year, YWLA also earned its second National Blue Ribbon distinction by the U.S. Department of Education for its consistently high academic achievements from 2016 to 2021. YWLA received its first National Blue Ribbon distinction in 2015.

To see the entire list of ranked schools in The Challenge Index, visit

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