Everybody talks about the highly selective "it" high schools that only take ace testers and "A" students. But what happens to solid students who don’t make the cut? What are their options?

The InsideSchools staff just published our 2017 annual list of our picks for the “B” student. These schools offer solid instruction as well as accelerated, college level and elective classes—many are great picks for the "A" student too.

How we compiled our list

We identified high schools that are in the top 30 percent citywide for “college readiness,” meaning the percentage of students who graduate with strong enough skills in English and math to avoid taking remedial classes at the City University of New York (CUNY) colleges.

Using the most recent data available (2015-16 school year), schools that have a college readiness rate of at least 43 percent fall into the top 30 percent of schools. The citywide average is 34 percent.

Next, we narrowed the list to schools and programs that a “B” student got into as a 9th-grader in the current school year (2017-18). We included options that don’t screen for grades—limited unscreened, audition only and educational option admissions methods—as well as screened schools where the lowest accepted grade average for an incoming 9th-grader fell between 65 and 85. For each school, we also list the lowest 7th grade ELA and math state test accepted for an incoming 9th-grader.

Finally, we believe that stats don’t tell the whole story and included a few solid options that don’t meet the criteria stated above, either because they are too new to have college readiness data or we believe are worth considering despite falling below our minimum threshold.

You can review our Best High School Bets for the “B” Student here.

More resources

Check out our admissions guides: Tips for Completing your High School Application and High School Admissions Advice for 8th Graders.

See a calendar of upcoming school tours on the Department of Education's website.

Still got questions? Join us on Facebook Live on Monday, November 13 at 5:30 pm. We'll be discussing best high school bets for the "B" student, giving you tips on how to complete your high school application and answering questions you have leading up to the December 1 application deadline.

Did we miss any schools? Please share your suggestions in the Comments sections and don't forget to include why you think the school is a best bet.