Communities celebrate College Success Award to kick-off the new school year

High schools in Oklahoma, Texas and Connecticut go above and beyond to show their spirit and school pride in winning the 2019 GreatSchools College Success Award.

OAKLAND, CA (October 18, 2019) — Today, GreatSchools.org announced the winners of the Celebrating College Success social media contest for 2019 GreatSchools College Success Award-winning high schools. In May 2019, 1,722 public high schools across the country were honored and celebrated for excelling in preparing their students for college and ultimately careers.[1] The four contest winners exhibited creativity, community involvement, and the spirit of college success.

Award-winning schools and their communities hosted rallies, college signing days and workshops where alumni would come and talk to current students about their journey to college. To join in the celebration and kick off back-to-school season, GreatSchools.org hosted the Celebrating College Success social media contest to highlight award recipients’ celebrations and hard work in preparing students to succeed in college. Winning schools included staff, students, families and their community who all invested in this effort. This year’s grand prize winner was Plainview High School from Ardmore, Oklahoma, a school serving 443 students, 26 percent of which are from low-income families. Plainview High School will receive a $1,000 cash prize and a customized College Success Award banner. The runner up winners include Anderson High School from Austin, Texas, Connecticut IB Academy from East Hartford, Connecticut and Richardson High School from Richardson, Texas.

“We are honored to be named a winner of the 2019 GreatSchools College Success Award and the Celebrating College Success contest,” said Randy Barker, principal at Plainview High School. First year multimedia class, led by Plainview veteran teacher, Christy Parham put together the winning video while connecting with the school community in an exciting new way. “We are very proud of the hard work that the students, staff and community have shown. The continued support and dedication year after year has helped us achieve this great accomplishment. We have a tremendous amount of pride and tradition in our academic rigor at Plainview. That rigor helps ensure that our students are prepared for success in college and beyond. We are honored to receive this great award.”

This is the second year GreatSchools.org has awarded the College Success Award to public high schools using data made available from each state. As part of the awards, GreatSchools.org has also spotlighted schools, common best practices, and educator-created solutions to explore the successful educational approaches taken by the winners across the country. The College Success Award has a particular focus on elevating and understanding successful schools serving a high percentage of students from low-income families. To learn more about the Award methodology, download lists of winning schools by state, and to see videos stories from College Success Award National Spotlight Schools, click here.


1. The College Success Award-winning schools are in these 25 states: Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Texas, Vermont, and Wyoming.

Author: GreatSchools.org

GreatSchools is the leading national nonprofit empowering parents with essential information to improve educational opportunities for their child. GreatSchools’ trusted ratings and school quality information help parents find the right school for their family and take action to improve schools in their communities. Thousands of articles, tips and interactive tools help parents support their child’s learning and well-being every day. Families, community leaders and policymakers turn to GreatSchools for the school information they need to guide children to great futures.