Arianna Bennett
Channel 2 News

The Davidson Academy here in Reno has been training what it calls "profoundly gifted" students at its University of Nevada campus since it opened in 2006. This week, the school is getting some national recognition.

The academy earned top honors from a poll by Newsweek and The Daily Beast, as well as The Washington Post's High School Challenge.

"It feels great to be recognized on a national level," Davidson Academy Director Colleen Harsin said. "The Davidson Academy of Nevada is a unique school in the country, so it's thrilling to be on lists that recognize that."

The two organizations compiled lists of the best American high schools by looking at criteria like their graduation rates, test scores, and the rate of college attendance after graduation.

The Davidson Academy's numbers speak for themselves. 100 percent of its students graduate from high school, and 100 percent of them go on to college. The average AP test score among its students is a 4.7 out of five.

So what's their secret?

Harsin said that the kids already have the drive to be successful, so the teachers and administrators just give them resources and step back.

"We just get out of their way," Harsin said. "We make sure that their personalized learning plan reflects their interests and abilities and also makes sure they're meeting graduation requirements in general as well."

Harsin said about half of the Davidson Academy's 140 students moved here from other states, and she is hoping that this national publicity will help them get the word out so they can increase enrollment from here in Nevada and across the country.

To see the Newsweek/Daily Beast rankings, click here.

For The Washington Post's High School Challenge, click here.