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RI Ranks Last in New England, MA Ranks #1 in U.S. in Education

Monday, July 31, 2017

 

Five of the top six New England States are ranked in the top ten for quality of education -- Rhode Island is not one of them. Rhode Island ranks 25th in the United States.

"Most parents don’t have the luxury of placing their children in exclusive, private or preparatory schools that are known for providing their students with greater individual attention," said WalletHub in a study released on Monday morning

In New England, Massachusetts ranks #1 in the United States, New Hampshire #3, Vermont #5, Connecticut #8, and Maine #10.

 

Source: WalletHub

 

"For the majority of U.S. families, public education is the only option. But the quality of public school systems varies widely from state to state and is often a question of funding. Public elementary and secondary education dollars traditionally flow from three sources: the federal, state and local governments...Unlike other research that focuses primarily on academic outcomes or school finance, however, WalletHub’s analysis takes a more comprehensive approach, accounting for performance, funding, safety, class size and instructor credentials."

This study is the most critical of Rhode Island schools of a number of studies released in the past year -- in most studies RI and Maine rank similarly, but in this study Maine ranks 10th which is fifteen places higher than Rhode Island's 25th ranking. 

To determine the top-performing school systems in America, WalletHub’s analysts compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across 21 key measures. Read on for our findings, expert insight from a panel of researchers and a full description of our methodology.

Methodology

In order to determine the best and worst states for public-school education, WalletHub’s analysts compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across two key dimensions, including “Quality” and “Safety.”

We evaluated those dimensions using 21 relevant metrics, which are listed below with their corresponding weights. Each metric was graded on a 100-point scale, with a score of 100 representing the best school-system quality.

Finally, we determined each state and the District’s weighted average across all metrics to calculate its total score and used the resulting scores to rank-order our sample.

Quality – Total Points: 60

Presence of Public Schools in “Top 700 Best U.S. Schools”: Full Weight (~3.00 Points)
Note: This metric measures the number of public schools in U.S. News & World Report’s “Top 700 Best U.S. Schools” ranking adjusted by the number of public schools for each state in the U.S. News & World Report sample.
High School Graduation Rate Among Low-Income Students: Full Weight (~3.00 Points)
Dropout Rate: Double Weight (~6.00 Points)
Math Test Scores: Double Weight (~6.00 Points)
Note: This metric measures the scores earned by fourth and eighth graders.
Reading Test Scores: Double Weight (~6.00 Points)
Note: This metric measures the scores earned by fourth and eighth graders.
Share of 2016 High School Class Scoring “3” or Higher on Advanced Placement Exams: Double Weight (~6.00 Points)
Median SAT Score: Double Weight (~6.00 Points)
Median ACT Score: Double Weight (~6.00 Points)
Share of High School Graduates Who Completed ACT and/or SAT: Double Weight (~6.00 Points)
Note: For this metric, the percentage sum may be larger than 100 percent, considering some students completed both standardized tests. However, no data specifying the number of students who did so are available.
Division of SAT Results by Percentile: Full Weight (~3.00 Points)
Division of ACT Results by Percentile: Full Weight (~3.00 Points)
Pupil-Teacher Ratio: Full Weight (~3.00 Points)
Share of Licensed/Certified Public K–12 Teachers: Full Weight (~2.86 Points)

Safety – Total Points: 40

Share of Threatened/Injured High School Students : Double Weight (~8.00 Points)
Note: This metric measures the percentage of public school students in grades 9 to 12 who reported being threatened or injured with a weapon on school property.
Share of High School Students Not Attending School Due to Safety Concerns: Full Weight (~4.00 Points)
Note: This metric measures the percentage of public school students in grades 9 to 12 who reported not attending school because they felt unsafe at or on their way to or from school.
Share of High School Students with Access to Illegal Drugs: Full Weight (~4.00 Points)
Note: This metric measures the percentage of public school students in grades 9 to 12 who reported that illegal drugs were made available to them on school property.
Share of High School Students Participating in Violence: Full Weight (~4.00 Points)
Note: This metric measures the percentage of public school students in grades 9 to 12 who reported involvement in a physical fight at least once during the previous 12 months on school property.
Share of Armed High School Students: Full Weight (~4.00 Points)
Note: This metric measures the percentage of public school students in grades 9 to 12 who reported carrying a weapon on school property.
Bullying Incidence Rate: Double Weight (~8.00 Points)
Disciplinary Incidence Rate: Full Weight (~4.00 Points)
Note: Rate measured per 100,000 students.
Youth Incarceration Rate: Full Weight (~4.00 Points)
Note: Rate measured per 100,000 population aged 20 and younger.

 

Sources: Data used to create this ranking were collected from the U.S. Census Bureau, National Center for Educational Statistics, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, U.S. News & World Report, College Board and ACT.

 

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