The best state in the country for “quality of education” is Massachusetts, according to research released today (January 21) by WalletHub. The study was part of WalletHub’s annual ranking of the “Most & Least Educated States in America.” This year’s ranking combined two categories — educational attainment and quality of education — broken down by 20 “relevant metrics.” Massachusetts placed first in both categories.
While the educational attainment category is based solely on the percentage of residents with high school, associates, undergraduate, and graduate diplomas, quality of education includes 16 metrics ranging from quality of public high schools to quality of public universities to educational attainment based on gender and race. Within that category, California follows Massachusetts. Rounding out the top five for quality of education are Florida, Maryland, and Vermont, respectively.
“For a growing number of Americans, a good education is the ticket to a better future,” WalletHub’s report reads. “College opens doors to more career opportunities, higher earnings and new social connections, among other benefits. But how much schooling one receives also matters to some extent. Generally, the higher the level of education one completes, the higher their income potential and the lower their chances of unemployment become.”
At the other side of the list, Mississippi had the lowest quality of education and finished at the bottom of the overall ranking. One spot better than Mississippi is Alaska. Up next were Louisiana, Idaho, and South Carolina, respectively. With all rankings and studies of this nature, there were some limitations. For one was the reliance on U.S. News rankings for the category of “quality of school system.” The U.S. News largely ranks schools based on a one-to-five scoring scale among peer school systems. Some of the metrics are also based on “projected data,” including high school graduation rates spanning all the way to 2032.
(SEE THE NEXT PAGE FOR THE ENTIRE LIST OF ALL 50 STATES.)