Class Rank FAQ’s

Why has Lyons Township High School eliminated class rank?

    • Nationally, the use of class rank has been used less and less as an indicator for college acceptance, falling behind GPA, rigorous coursework, the student essay, and even student interest in attending the school.  (National Association of College Admissions Counselors)
    • Very little difference exists across 50 places in a ranking at large, highly competitive school like LT.
    • Students at LT ranked in the middle (500th) have a weighted GPA of 3.2 and un-weighted GPA of 2.9. 
    • Students in the middle at LT have ACT and other test scores higher than many other schools’ middle ranked students. 
    • More LT students will have the opportunity to be accepted into colleges based on coursework and grades instead of a measure against his/her peers.
    • Students may choose courses they are interested in rather than taking one that might provide a higher rank.
    • Most schools similar to LT have eliminated rank, putting LT students at a disadvantage when being compared for admission, especially when a student has a rank lower than the top 5%.

Other than LT, who else has eliminated rank?

  • Evanston, Maine Township West, South & East, Glenbrook North & South, New Trier, Stevenson, Highland Park, Deerfield, Libertyville, Vernon Hills, Naperville North & Central, Hinsdale Central & South, Wheaton/Warrenville South, Wheaton North, Fenwick, Lake Zurich, Barrington, Lake Forest, St. Charles, Conant, Fremd, Hoffman Estates, Palatine, Schaumburg, Buffalo Grove, Elk Grove, Wheeling, Hersey, Rolling Meadows, Prospect, Joliet Central & West, Niles West & North, Stagg, Sandberg, Andrew, IMSA, Benet, St. Ignatius, Mother McAuley, St. Viator, Providence, Oak Park River Forest

How will students be recognized without ranking?

  • With the elimination of Class Rank, a number of recognitions must be reshaped to reflect achievement independent of rank. Traditionally, academic excellence has been recognized by two awards: the Gold L award and honor graduates. Gold L represents students who are in the top 15% of graduates based on a weighted GPA ranking as of the end of the 7th semester. Honor graduates are students who’s weighted GPA was equal to or greater than 5.0 or who’s un-weighted GPA was 4.0.
    After much discussion with the Curriculum Staff Development Team, the following recommendations are made to recognize academic achievement for the Class of 2017 and beyond:
    • Students would graduate LTHS with “Gold L” honors if, after the 7th semester, they achieve* 
      • an un-weighted GPA of 3.6667 or higher (equivalent to an A- on a 4.0 scale) or 
      • a weighted GPA of 4.5 or higher.
    • Students would graduate LTHS with high honors if, after the seventh semester, they achieve
      • an un-weighted GPA of 4.0 or
      • a weighted GPA of 5.0 or higher
              *No GPA will be rounded in the determination of “Gold L” honors or high honors

    Since there would no longer be a student ranked number 1 in the class, there would no longer be a Valedictorian. Instead, a Commencement Speaker would be chosen by the following process:
    • Interested students from among those who achieve high honors would be invited to write a speech and submit it to be reviewed.
    • A committee appointed by the Principal consisting of teachers, administrators and students would select the speaker.
    • The speaker would not be designated the Valedictorian; rather, the student would be chosen to give the Commencement Address. 
    • Commencement would continue to have three speeches.
      • A Commencement address (see above)
      • An address by the Class President
      • An address by the Student Council President
    • The meditation, formerly the role given to the Salutatorian, would be chosen by the Principal.

    National Honor Society would also need to change its academic identifier. NHS currently invites only those who are in the top 20% of their class, based on a weighted GPA. By choosing a target GPA that approximates the top 20% based on previous years and that includes weighted or un-weighted grades, a little wider net can be cast for initial consideration.
    Invitations to apply for NHS consideration will be extended to students who meet the minimum standard of scholarship of an un-weighted GPA of 3.5 or higher or a weighted GPA of 4.25 or higher.

When is the earliest that this change will take place?

  • The Class of 2017 will be the first to graduate without a rank.
    All classes to graduate prior to 2017 were ranked and had a valedictorian and a salutatorian.
    • As of May 19, 2014 the unofficial ranking information was removed from Infinite Campus. 
    • Two weeks following the end of a semester, an official weighted and un-weighted rank will be calculated for student in the classes of 2014, 2015 and 2016.
    • An official weighted and un-weighted rank will be placed on the report card and transcript of students in the classes of 2014, 2015, and 2016.
    • For the class of 2017 and thereafter, no official rank will be calculated.  Information will be provided regarding the high, median and low ranks for comparative purposes will be placed on the school profile that gets sent to every school along with an official transcript