HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Roosevelt High School took the top spot among Hawaii public high schools in the newly-released U.S. News & World Report "Best High Schools" ranking.
That's up from fifth in the state in 2016.
Roosevelt unseated Mililani High, which was ranked no. 2 in the state this year.
Roosevelt High Principal Sean Wong, an alumnus of the school, said the core priority on the campus is creating a "place where students feel welcome."
"The big credit goes to the students for taking their education very seriously, and our faculty and staff," Wong said. "But like I told my staff, it's good to celebrate and be recognized, but let's not take our foot off the gas pedal."
Wong, who has headed up the school for two years, said Roosevelt students have an array of programs they can take advantage of, including Advanced Placement courses, early college classes and technical education programs.
"for me, I look at Roosevelt as being a school of opportunity," he said. "It's having a variety of options or opportunities for our students."
McKinley High was in third place in the U.S. News & World Report rankings, while Kalani and Moanalua high schools rounded out the top five.
Roosevelt topped the list, the magazine said, because of its high AP participation rate (57 percent). Its students also demonstrated strong proficiency in math and English.
The test scores were from the 2014-15 school year, when 80 percent of Roosevelt students showed proficiency in English language arts and 47 percent showed proficiency in math.
Roosevelt ranked 1,561th among all high schools nationally.