Special Report

States With the Best (and Worst) Schools


24/7 Wall St. reviewed Education Week’s Quality Counts 2018 report. The education research center reviewed dozens of metrics grouped into three equally-weighted categories:

> The Chance-for-Success Index examines the role of education in promoting positive outcomes over the course of an individual’s lifetime.

> The School Finance Index evaluates spending on education and equity in funding across districts within a state.

> The K-12 Achievement Index, last updated in 2016 and containing data for the 2014-2015 school year, scores states on current academic performance, change over time, and poverty-based gaps.

We also considered each state’s median household income, poverty rate, the percentage of residents 25 and older with at least a high school diploma and the percentage with at least a bachelor’s degree from the U.S. Census’ Bureau’s 2016 American Community Survey. State monthly and annual unemployment rates came from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Graduation rates are defined as the percent of public high school students who graduated on time with a standard diploma for the 2015-2016 school year. All other data are for the most recent available year and are based on Education Week’s analysis of data from the U.S. Census Bureau and other sources.