Best States For Education 2019

Whether you’re a soon-to-be college student trying to figure out your next move after high school graduation or you have children in your household, there’s one thing that both have in common: the desire to find the best schools.

A great school system is a selling point for homes on the market, and college students are willing to pay extra money to attend out-of-state schools. These examples are just two that show how important education is to many people.

While there are great schools in every state in the U.S., some states have exceptional school districts and institutions of higher learning that stand out above the rest.

There isn’t just one set list of the best schools, however. Many publications and think tanks have created their own lists of the best schools for education based on a number of factors.

One such list was created by U.S. News & World Report. The 2018 Education Rankings is based 50% on higher education factors such as graduation rates and tuition costs. The remaining 50% is based on Pre-K through 12, using factors such as test scores and high school graduation rates.

Based on this list, Massachusetts came in first place. Coming in right behind was New Jersey, followed by Utah taking the third slot. The top 10 states for the best education based on this report were:

Education Week’s Quality Counts report of 2018 is another report that ranks the best states in the nation. Massachusetts and New Jersey also topped this list. However, Vermont took third place. Based on this report, the top states for education were:

This report took a look at high school graduation rates, public school spending, the number of adults with a bachelor’s degree or higher, and adults with incomes that are above national levels.

Yet another report was compiled by WalletHub. This report focused more on the K-12 public school systems.

Topping this list was, again, Massachusetts. This was followed by New Jersey in second place and Connecticut in third. The top 10 states for education based on this list were:

As you can see, there are many states that appear on all three lists. However, the different criteria considered has changed the order or added states that weren’t on another list.

When selecting a state with the best schools, it’s best to figure out what’s most important for your situation and look at data surrounding that. For example, if your focus is on K-12 public schools, look at research and data focused on these schools. If you’re trying to figure out where to go to college, consider data and information surrounding factors such as tuition costs and graduation rates.

State Overall Rank Higher Education Rank (Pre)K-12 Rank 2019 Pop.
Massachusetts12716,939,373
New Jersey23028,922,547
Florida312721,646,155
Washington42197,666,343
New Hampshire53731,363,852
Nebraska6791,940,919
Virginia71488,571,946
Vermont8414627,180
Iowa98133,167,997
Utah106223,221,610
Colorado119145,770,545
Connecticut124453,567,871
Maryland1317116,062,917
Wisconsin1411165,832,661
Kansas1513152,910,931
Wyoming16334572,381
Minnesota1720125,655,925
South Dakota181023892,631
Illinois1931712,700,381
North Dakota20535760,900
California2143739,747,267
New York22152519,491,339
Delaware231624975,033
Indiana243966,718,616
North Carolina25122810,497,741
Montana2619201,074,532
Missouri2726216,147,861
Maine2834171,342,097
Hawaii2921301,416,589
Georgia30253110,627,767
Ohio31381811,718,568
Pennsylvania32501012,813,969
Idaho3335261,790,182
Texas34323329,087,070
Tennessee3523386,833,793
Oregon3622394,245,901
Michigan37422910,020,472
Kentucky3843324,484,047
Oklahoma3928433,948,950
Arizona4024447,275,070
Rhode Island4148361,056,738
Arkansas4240403,026,412
South Carolina4346415,147,111
West Virginia4445421,791,951
Nevada4518483,087,025
Mississippi4633452,987,895
Alaska473647735,720
Louisiana4849464,652,581
New Mexico4929502,096,034
Alabama5047494,898,246