Which teams did the best on the high school circuit this Fall? There are many definitions of success in Model UN, and awards are not the purpose of Model UN. Nevertheless, they do tell us which teams are doing well and our rankings are meant to recognize teams for their accomplishments at conferences.
The methodology is the same as last year with modifications in conference weightings to reflect attendance this year. The most competitive conference in the Fall was PMUNC followed by WMHSMUN. Advanced conferences with about 500 or more delegates also received high weightings including: BruinMUN, BUSUN, CIMUN, EHSMUN, GTMUN, RHSMUN, SMUNC, SSUNS, SUSMUN, THSMUN. All other advanced conferences with available data received a weighting.
Disclaimer: We can only use available data that is submitted to us; winning teams will be excluded if we are missing the data. This ranking is not meant to capture all of high school MUN as many good teams participate at conferences that do not value the competitive aspect of Model UN. The Fall rankings are naturally skewed toward regions where MUN is more widely available; see the explanation below.
Reasons for Changing to Tiered Ranking
Best Delegate decided to change the rankings from numerical rankings to tiered rankings due to several reasons. First, winter break is an arbitrary cutoff date as different schools have different academic schedules, and there is huge disparity in availability or competitiveness of conferences in different regions in the Fall. For example, some teams have already been to four conferences across the nation while other traditionally top-ranked teams have only attended one or have yet to even attend one (including impacts from Hurricane Sandy this year).
Second, we want to reduce two types of behavior that we believe negatively impacts the circuit. One is carteling — teams choosing to attend conferences just so they can boost their ranking or go head-to-head with another top team — because this focuses too much on manipulating competition and not on selecting conferences that best fit the team’s needs and creating a holistic experience around a conference beyond who’ll they’ll be seeing in committee. It has also negatively affected several conferences that have educational missions and are typically attended by teams looking for an diplomatic environment rather than a competitive one.
The other negative behavior is the overthrowing of club officers or other forms of upheaval just because a team drops in rank. The inability by certain teams to see that they are still in the top 5% of all high school MUN teams despite a slight drop in relative rank that is mostly outside their control is unhealthy and reveals deeper cultural flaws within those teams. Hopefully tiering will bring forth a more accurate perspective for teams.
Finally, the reason behind rankings is not to encourage competition. Our intent has been and still is the recognition of successes in Model UN. We simply want to let others know who is doing well and congratulate them for doing so. Tiered rankings present that information in a healthier manner than numerical rankings.
PR Media Kits & All-Star Teams
We are hoping to launch two things in the near future that we think will benefit the circuit.
1. PR Media Kits: We want teams that are successful — whether this means winning awards and getting ranked or just having a good learning experience at a conference — to be able to publicize their success stories to their schools, parents, administration, school boards, and community. There’s only a marginal impact if Best Delegate features a success story or ranking and teams don’t tell other stakeholders in education about it. Letting others know is important to get outside recognition, support, or even funding for your team, and we’ll be developing a downloadable PR Media Kit to set teams up for public relations success after each conference.
2. All-Star Team: As described in the Definitions of Success article, the All-Star Team will recognize sets of individuals from a particular circuit for making a difference inside and outside of committee during conferences. These are the diplomatic leaders — the true Best Delegates — that are respected by participants from across the circuit. As such, they will be selected through a voting process where teams will nominate individuals from other schools. The All-Star Team serves a larger purpose of strengthening relationships between teams within a community, and we decided this method would be more beneficial and healthier for the circuit than just making a list of the top individual award winners. The first All-Star team will start in the college circuit, and more details will be announced in the future for the high school circuit.
With that said, here we go with the Fall 2012 North American High School Rankings.
Top 25: Best Delegations
Top 5 (alphabetical order)
Dalton School (New York)
Dalton won the Outstanding Large Delegation award at PMUNC, the most competitive conference of the Fall, and may be the closest team to catching rival Horace Mann at the moment. They also won Best Delegation at HoMMUNC.
Horace Mann School (New York)
Horace Mann is the clear-cut top-ranked team this Fall after winning Best Large Delegation at PMUNC and the sweepstakes Coon Award at WMHSMUN, the two most competitive conferences available. They’ll be defending their #1 rank at ILMUNC which is expected to be exceptionally competitive this year.
Huntington Beach High School (California)
Huntington Beach was again the most prolific award-winning team in the Fall and won four delegation awards in this order: Best Large at EHSMUN, Best California at BruinMUN and Best Small at WMHSMUN with a split team on back-to-back weekends, and Award of Distinction at RHSMUN.
Mira Costa High School (California)
Mira Costa cleaned up on individual awards at BUSUN, won Best Large at EHSMUN, and received the Award of Excellence at RHSMUN with a split team (the others attended the THIMUN-affiliated Paris MUN in France). They still have two more East Coast trips including another split team weekend to NHSMUN and BMUN.
Port Charlotte High School (Florida)
Port Charlotte continued its winning streak at GTMUN with another Burdell Cup and also took home Best Large Delegation at SSUNS. In addition to attending conferences in Florida in the Spring, ILMUNC rotates back into their schedule this year.
Top 10 (alphabetical order)
Cerritos High School (California)
Cerritos won Best Large at BruinMUN and Best Medium at EHSMUN. The highlight of the Spring will be a split team weekend to NHSMUN and BMUN.
Franklin High School (New Jersey)
Franklin won the Best Large Delegation award at RUMUN to vault itself to the top of the very competitive New Jersey circuit.
Langley High School (Virginia)
Langley topped rival Thomas Jefferson to take home Best Large at WMHSMUN. They will get a rematch with Horace Mann, TJ, and others at ILMUNC.
Lyons Township High School (Illinois)
Lyons Township pulled a huge upset at CIMUN with a first-place finish to skyrocket into the rankings for the first time at the top-10.
University of Chicago Lab School (Illinois)
Chicago Lab took home a pair of best small delegation awards this Fall: Best Small Delegation at PMUNC and Best Small Delegation at WUMUNS.
Top 25 (alphabetical order)
All these teams either won a delegation award at one of the larger, more competitive conferences or consistently won awards across multiple conferences. Highlights are below.
American Heritage School (Florida)
Highlight: Outstanding Small Delegation at WMHSMUN
Bergen County Academies (New Jersey)
Highlight: Best Medium Delegation at RUMUN
Canterbury School – Ft. Myers (Florida)
Highlight: Best Small Delegation at PMUNC
Centennial High School (Georgia)
Highlight: Delegation awards at GTMUN and SUSMUN.
East Brunswick High School (New Jersey)
Highlight: Outstanding Large Delegation at RUMUN
Gulf Coast High School (Florida)
Highlight: Outstanding Delegation at GTMUN.
Henry M. Gunn High School (California)
Highlight: Best Large Delegation at SMUNC.
Highland Park High School (Illinois)
Highlight: Third-place delegation at CIMUN.
New Canaan High School (Connecticut)
Highlight: Many awards at BUSUN and PMUNC.
Richland Northeast High School (South Carolina)
Highlight: Award of Distinction at SUSMUN
Santa Margarita Catholic High School (California)
Highlight: Two Best Class delegation awards at THSMUN. Trips to UK and France.
St. Ignatius College Prep (Illinois)
Highlight: Second-place delegation at CIMUN.
Stuyvesant High School (New York)
Highlight: Many awards at BUSUN. Also Outstanding Delegation at HoMMUNC.
Thomas Jefferson High School for Science & Technology (Virginia)
Highlight: Outstanding Large Delegation at WMHSMUN
West Windsor-Plainsboro High School South (New Jersey)
Highlight: Best Small Delegation at RUMUN
Outstanding Delegations (alphabetical order)
All of these teams either won delegation awards at smaller conferences or won a small delegation award at a larger, more competitive conference. A few of them were included for consistently winning across conferences or for finishing near the top at a competitive conference. There are a total of 60 teams on the Outstanding Delegations category due to marginal differences in score.
- Academies @ Englewood (New Jersey)
- California High School – San Ramon (California)
- Cape Coral High School (Florida)
- Chaminade College Prep (California)
- Colegio Puertoriqueño de Niñas (Puerto Rico)
- Colegio San Ignacio de Loyola (Puerto Rico)
- Forest Hills Central High School (Michigan)
- Forest Hills Northern High School (Michigan)
- Fulton Science Academy High School (Georgia)
- Great Valley High School (Pennsylvania)
- Lake Ridge Academy (Ohio)
- League of Creative Minds (California)
- Marymount High School (California)
- McCallie School (Tennessee)
- Mt. Lebanon High School (Pennsylvania)
- Oakville Trafalgar High School (Ontario, Canada)
- Oasis High School (Florida)
- Palos Verdes Peninsula High School (California)
- Pope John Paul II High School (Tennessee)
- Princeton High School (New Jersey)
- Roeper School (Michigan)
- Royal Oak High School (Michigan)
- Saint John’s School (Puerto Rico)
- Santa Teresa High School (California)
- Southwestern Classical Academy (Michigan)
- Spanish River High School (Florida)
- Strathcona Tweedsmuir School (Alberta, Canada)
- TASIS School of Dorado (Puerto Rico)
- Trinity School (New York)
- Trumbull High School (Connecticut)
- Tustin High School (California)
- University High School – Irvine (California)
- West Windsor-Plainsboro High School North (New Jersey)
- Whitney High School (California)
- Wood River High School (Idaho)
Congratulations to all the teams! Enjoy your winter break, and good luck with the preparations for the conferences in the winter and spring!