Back to class: Orlando's top-rated and most-improved public elementary schools

How strong are the public elementary schools in Orlando?

With a fresh school year kicking off, we analyzed newly released data from — which include comprehensive report cards, rankings and reviews — to identify those schools that made the biggest strides last year and those that lead their peers.

Lancaster Elementary School's overall rating improved the most among similar schools in Orlando, rising from a C- to a C+, according to data from Niche.

For the 2019-2020 school year, the school, located at 6700 Sheryl Ann Drive, enrolls 859 students. Lancaster Elementary serves a diverse population: 70% of students identify as Hispanic and 20% identify as black. Niche graded the school a C+ for academics (on an A-D scale).

The overall ranking comes from Niche's proprietary algorithms. A school's ranking might change due to many factors, including the relative rankings of similar schools and whether a school gained or lost peers due to openings or closings. Other numbers come from current public data from the U.S. government.

Academically, 53% of Lancaster Elementary School's students scored as proficient or above in math, and 39% did so in reading. That's compared to city averages of 58% in math and 50% in reading. The school's improved overall rating is notable in that it serves a less-affluent population, with 97% of students qualifying for free or reduced lunch, 18% more than the city average.

It's not the only school that's climbed Niche's rankings this year. Shenandoah Elementary School saw its overall rating increase from a B to an A-. The school is located at 4827 Conway Road and is a bit smaller, currently serving 590 students, of whom 45% identify as white and 43% identify as Hispanic.

Niche graded Shenandoah Elementary School an A- for academics on an A-D scale. The school's latest math proficiency was at 72%, and reading proficiency was 69%.

Cheney Elementary School also saw improvement in its overall rating, from C+ to B. The school is located at 2000 N. Forsyth Road and has 524 students currently enrolled, of whom 64% identify as Hispanic and 20% identify as white.

Niche graded Cheney Elementary School a B for academics on an A-D scale. Its latest math proficiency was at 63%, and reading proficiency was 53%. The school also serves a less-affluent community, with 99% of students qualifying for free or reduced lunch.

While some public elementary schools in Orlando are moving up the ranks, others are consistently top-rated overall, including:

Want more of the latest intel on Orlando schools? Hoodline also analyzed the latest Niche ratings for the city's public high schools.

This story was created automatically using data from, then reviewed by an editor before publication. Click here for more about how and why Hoodline is automating local news. Got thoughts about what we're doing? Go here to share your feedback.