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BASIS Scottsdale students work in a lab a few years ago. The BASIS Scottsdale campus earned the No. 5 ranking in the 2013 U.S. News & World Report list of best high schools nationwide. BASIS Tucson earned No. 2.

Jacob Chinn/BASIS Schools

BASIS recently received high acclaim in education from author and TIME magazine journalist Amanda Ripley’s new book, “The Smartest Kids in the World (and how they got that way).”

In Ripley’s book she discusses high achieving schools overseas and the difference between the U.S. education systems.

In the U.S. education system Ripley highlighted two American schools that were setting the bar for all children to learn higher-order thinking in order to thrive in the world, with BASIS among one of the schools she considered “breathtaking.”

David Schulz, director of public relations and communications for BASIS, said the charter school was able to be involved with being highlighted in the book because they volunteered to issue out the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA).

According to the National Center for Education Statistic website, the PISA test is an international assessment designed to measure student performance in areas such as reading, mathematics and science literacy.

“It’s a test that tries to correlate students and take all of their education by using various different disciplines they have learned to come up with critical, analysis to answer a question,” Schulz said.

Schulz believes that BASIS is setting the bar on how school facilities should be administrating education because many of their faculty members are skillfully trained in the areas they are teaching.

Many of the instructors at BASIS schools are not necessarily trained to be a teacher, but are experts in the field they’re teaching.

“The fact that teacher, classroom and student relationship is the most critical aspect of any educational attainment, it’s something we feel absolutely base truism for BASIS,” Schulz said. “The most important thing we do is get expert teachers, who are passionate, in a classroom with students being challenged to think harder and further them more than they have in the past.”

Along with teaching methods being viewed in different ways at BASIS, the school also offers an intense curriculum for students challenging them in each class they take.

“For us, we are extraordinarily proud of the fact that we were involved with the pilot program of PISA that looked at individual schools,” Schulz said. “What it means for us to be included in this, is that Amanda points to us as an example of the types of institutions that in other countries are reaching the highest level of achievement with all of their students.”

As of right now, there are currently five BASIS schools located in the Valley area, including Ahwatukee.

BASIS Ahwatukee, located at 10210 S. 50th Place, recently opened up shop for students a month ago.

“The Smartest Kids in the World” is now available in stores and at

• Contact writer: (480) 898-4903 or

(1) comment


To be honest, I was always saying that our kids have so much potential which gives an opportunity to raise the level of education. It is a known fact that for instance math material that is being studied by our kids in colleges and university, kids from Europe study in middle-high schools. Amazing fact, isn't it? That is why we need to work on writing (find effective essay writing from PhD writers online), reading and math as it opens new horizons for many more disciplines. In any case, it is better to raise standards and become the most education nation!

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