Best state for education | US news best states
The quality of a community’s schools is central to the aspirations of any family. Public education has largely been a local matter for school boards and states to allocate most of their funding. Yet for the past several decades, the federal government has entered the field: with the No Child Left Behind Act, President George W. Bush put in place annual testing requirements for states that for the first time were shown to have clear achievement gaps between white students and blacks. and Latino students, among wealthy, middle-income and low-income students, as well as students with disabilities and English learners.
The Obama administration pushed states to adopt more stringent educational standards and tests, new teacher evaluations and pay systems based on student test scores, and stricter reform models for so-called “failing” schools. In the twilight of the Obama administration, Congress replaced No Child Left Behind with the Every Student Success Act, which enshrined the annual testing requirement but otherwise represented a broader rollback of federal government involvement in K-12 education.
Meanwhile, the Trump administration’s biggest ticket education priority was expanding school choice — a big tent that includes everything from charter schools to private and parochial schools to school vouchers and education savings accounts. Despite striking at the federal level, a handful of states focused on expanding school choice options.
New Jersey is the top state for education. It is followed by Massachusetts, Florida, Washington and Colorado to make the top five. Six out of 10 states with the best education system are also in the top 10 best states overall.
Learn more about the best states for education below.
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