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BASIS Scottsdale, a charter school in Arizona, is the best public high school in America.

Its founding dates back nearly 20 years, when two economists struggled to find a school that could provide a rigorous education for their daughter. They started a charter school in Tucson with the belief that the goal of a great education should be to provide students with limitless opportunities. A second high school opened in the affluent suburb of Scottsdale in 2003.

In 2017, four out of the top five public schools — according to a ranking from US News & World Report — are all run by BASIS Educational Group LLC, a for-profit corporation.

Charter schools are public schools that are privately run, either for-profit or not. Their supporters see the schools as providing a leg up for underserved students who lack access to a personalized education, while critics claim that charter schools snatch away limited resources from other public schools.

Polarizing as they may be, charter schools have a track record of success. Business Insider spent the day at BASIS Scottsdale to see what makes it the best in the nation.

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There are nearly 7,000 charter schools in the US, and most are mission-driven. Some target gifted or high-risk kids.

Source: Education Week

The mission of BASIS charter schools is to produce top students who graduate with some of the highest test scores in the nation and go on to best ranked colleges and universities.

And BASIS Scottsdale does it better than any public high school in America.

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