Metro Academic and Classical High School

As a counselor helping students find the right college, first in Clayton and then at Metro High School in St. Louis, Chat Leonard has an unusual perspective on the bumps that can litter the road to higher education.

Both schools, she said, have bright, energetic, motivated students who have been preparing to go to college “since they were in utero.” But at Metro, a magnet school where almost 40 percent of the students qualify for free or reduced-price lunch, aiming to get into the best school possible may have a fuzzier focus than at a place like Clayton, where many more of the families are affluent.

(via Flickr/albertogp123)

A St. Louis high school student is the first public school student in the city since 2000 to earn a perfect score of 36 on his ACT college entrance exam.

Thomas Fliss is a senior at Metro Academic and Classical High School. He lives in St. Louis County but attends the school through the voluntary transfer program.

St. Louis School District officials say Fliss earned the perfect score when he took the ACT on Sept. 10. Less than one-tenth of 1 percent of students who take the test get a 36.