About Shelby Joe

Shelby Joe is the Publisher of Houston School Survey. He is the founder of Piqosity, a Houston-based adaptive, online learning platform. He began his career in education in 2003, when he founded General Academic out of his dorm room at Rice University. He holds a BA in Political Science. In his limited free time, he enjoys traveling and hunting for bargains.

Top Houston Schools by National Merit Semifinalists 2020

The 2020 National Merit Scholarship Competition generally represented a good year for Houston-area high school juniors. There were 386 area students who scored in the top 1% on the PSAT to earn the celebrated "Semifinalist" designation. Versus 365 Semifinalists in the previous year, there were 5% more brilliant students in Houston this go around. A National Merit Semifinalist (NMSF) [...]

By |2019-09-19T15:04:46-05:00September 18th, 2019|Analysis, Featured, Houston's Best Schools 2019|0 Comments

The ISEE vs. The HSPT Admissions Tests

Even in middle school, a student’s time might not wholly be one’s own. Preparing for two exams could hinder the student’s schoolwork and extracurricular activities. The question then boils down to: “With limited time, on which test should one focus one's attention?”  Below, we provide some considerations. In Essence The ISEE, Independent School Entrance Exam, is likely required by non-Catholic schools [...]

By |2019-08-23T11:09:35-05:00August 23rd, 2019|Advice|0 Comments

Houston’s Richest Private Schools by Endowment Value

Of the 15 Houston private schools reporting endowments, the average value is $24 million or $40,000 per student. Assuming schools are able to apply up to 5% of this amount towards annual expenditures, that amounts to $2,000 per student in support provided by their endowment. Given the young age of most of the schools in Houston, sizeable endowments are [...]

Best Houston Public High Schools by AP Scores

AP stands for Advanced Placement, which is a national curriculum for very smart high school students administered by the College Board. The College Board is the same non-profit organization that administers the SAT college admissions test. The College Board offers AP curricula in 38 subjects ranging from Art History to English Literature to Physics to Chinese, but most schools [...]

Top Houston Public High Schools by SAT Scores

Together with the ACT, the SAT is one of the most widely administered college admissions tests in the United States; more than 3 million high school students take these tests annually. As such, these scores are among the best to use when comparing the relative college-preparedness of a high school's graduates. The tables below show three sets of numbers: [...]

Houston’s Best Public Schools by STAAR Results

The State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) tests are the primary, quantitative measure of academic performance for Texas public schools. All public school students in grades 3-12 take some number of STAAR tests. The tests are administered every spring in core subjects including reading, writing, mathematics, science, and social studies. Students' scores are lumped into four performance [...]

An Academic Timeline from PreK to College

For first time parents, the unknowns about academic deadlines can be stress inducing. In this section, we aim to alleviate some of that stress by alerting you to potential milestones for which you may want to prepare. Conversely, we hope that by knowing when major deadlines are, you won't over prepare and stress out months or even years before [...]

By |2019-08-07T22:28:48-05:00August 7th, 2019|Advice|0 Comments

How to Choose a New School

Systematically evaluating and comparing the many school options in Houston is a daunting task, especially when each child and family emphasizes different criteria. In this section, we introduce the categories that we used in researching the schools profiled here. Please remember that the most important criteria—your child’ s fit and happiness— cannot be quantified in the pages that follow. [...]

By |2019-08-07T21:43:52-05:00August 7th, 2019|Advice|0 Comments

High School Placement Test (HSPT) Overview

Scholastic Testing Service’s HSPT is an admissions test for entry into Catholic high schools. The HSPT contains five multiple-choice sections: Verbal Quantitative Skills Reading Mathematics Language Skills Depending on the school, the HSPT might also feature an optional section covering Science, Mechanical Aptitude or Catholic Religion. The optional test is not included in the composite score from the HSPT and not every school chooses [...]

By |2019-08-07T21:40:37-05:00August 7th, 2019|Advice|0 Comments

Private School Application Process Overview

In this article, we provide advice for starting the private school application process. In general, start the process early, keep your child’s happiness in mind, and talk with as many people as possible. The Application Form Most of the private schools in Houston post application forms to each school’s individual website, while a few private schools release paper applications upon request. As with colleges, [...]

By |2019-08-07T17:56:31-05:00August 7th, 2019|Advice|0 Comments