As summer winds down and the academic year draws closer, parents and students may be considering where to enroll to get the best education. On Tuesday, WalletHub, a personal finance social network, released its 2015 rankings of the best and worst school systems in the United States.
WalletHub looked at 13 metrics on school quality and safety, including dropout rates, pupil-teacher ratio, math and reading test scores, average SAT scores, graduation rate and number of bullying incidents. It found Massachusetts had the best school systems, followed by Colorado and New Jersey. On the opposite end of the spectrum were Alaska and the District of Columbia.
The full analysis broke down the overall rankings into smaller, more specific lists. For example, WalletHub found the safest schools were in Wisconsin and the most bullying was in Montana. Vermont had the lowest pupil-teacher ratio, at about 9.2 per student, and California had the highest, with about 24.9 kids per teacher. North Dakota had the highest SAT scores -- students score an average of 1,816 out of 2,400.
But WalletHub's rankings are just one of dozens on the Web. For example, business site 24/7 Wall Street found in January that Massachusetts had the best school systems, but New Jersey came in second. Education ranking site Niche says the top districts are in New York and Pennsylvania.
If you're looking at performance alone, Minnesota, New Hampshire and Massachusetts have the highest numbers of students scoring above and below proficient in math, according to data from the National Center for Education Statistics under the Education Department. Massachusetts, New Jersey, Maryland and New Hampshire top the list for reading.
Take a look at WalletHub's results and decide for yourself.
States With The Best Schools:
3. New Jersey
7. North Dakota
States With The Worst Schools:
42. New Mexico
44. West Virginia
45. South Carolina
50. District of Columbia