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Most and least educated states in America

  • Most and least educated states in America

    More than 50 million Americans each year attend public elementary and secondary schools, according to the National Center for Education Statistics, making the country's schooling system one of the farthest-reaching (and most impactful) government services. And while the debate over alternatives like charter schools rages on, one thing is undebatable: The future of the country lies in our youth, and our ability to educate them.

    As education is an issue handled at the state level; everything from curricula and budgets to graduation requirements vary state to state, making “an American education” hard to define.

    To help understand areas with the highest educational attainment, Stacker used data from the 2013–2017 American Community Survey (most recent release) to construct a weighted index which measures the relative education level for every state. This index evaluates each state's population older than 25 across seven educational tiers, ranging from individuals not educated past eighth grade to those with graduate or professional degrees.

    For each segment of these tiers, a points-based indexing system was applied in direct proportion to the estimated years of schooling for each level of educational attainment. Lastly, the full range of index scores was normalized to a 0 to 100 scale, with 100 representing the most educated state in the United States. What follows is a ranking from least educated to most of all the 50 states.

    So where does your state stack up? Read on to discover which states are the most educated in the U.S.

    You may also like: Most and least insured states in America

  • #50. West Virginia

    - Education index: 91.60
    - Less than high school: 4.7%
    - 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 9.4%
    - High school graduate or equivalent: 40.6%
    - Some college, no degree: 18.5%
    - Associate's degree: 6.9%
    - Bachelor's degree: 12%
    - Graduate or professional degree: 7.9%

  • #49. Mississippi

    - Education index: 92.13
    - Less than high school: 5.6%
    - 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 11%
    - High school graduate or equivalent: 30.4%
    - Some college, no degree: 22.6%
    - Associate's degree: 9.1%
    - Bachelor's degree: 13.3%
    - Graduate or professional degree: 8%

  • #48. Louisiana

    - Education index: 92.34
    - Less than high school: 5.4%
    - 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 10.3%
    - High school graduate or equivalent: 33.8%
    - Some college, no degree: 21.3%
    - Associate's degree: 5.8%
    - Bachelor's degree: 15.3%
    - Graduate or professional degree: 8.1%

  • #47. Arkansas

    - Education index: 92.35
    - Less than high school: 5.2%
    - 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 9.2%
    - High school graduate or equivalent: 34.3%
    - Some college, no degree: 22.6%
    - Associate's degree: 6.7%
    - Bachelor's degree: 14.1%
    - Graduate or professional degree: 7.9%

  • #46. Kentucky

    - Education index: 92.81
    - Less than high school: 6.1%
    - 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 8.7%
    - High school graduate or equivalent: 33.1%
    - Some college, no degree: 20.9%
    - Associate's degree: 8%
    - Bachelor's degree: 13.6%
    - Graduate or professional degree: 9.6%

  • #45. Nevada

    - Education index: 93.30
    - Less than high school: 5.9%
    - 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 8.3%
    - High school graduate or equivalent: 28.3%
    - Some college, no degree: 25.8%
    - Associate's degree: 8.1%
    - Bachelor's degree: 15.6%
    - Graduate or professional degree: 8.1%

  • #44. Alabama

    - Education index: 93.40
    - Less than high school: 4.7%
    - 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 10.0%
    - High school graduate or equivalent: 30.9%
    - Some college, no degree: 21.7%
    - Associate's degree: 8.2%
    - Bachelor's degree: 15.4%
    - Graduate or professional degree: 9.1%

  • #43. Texas

    - Education index: 93.63
    - Less than high school: 8.7%
    - 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 8.5%
    - High school graduate or equivalent: 25.1%
    - Some college, no degree: 22.1%
    - Associate's degree: 6.9%
    - Bachelor's degree: 18.8%
    - Graduate or professional degree: 9.9%

  • #42. Tennessee

    - Education index: 93.90
    - Less than high school: 5.1%
    - 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 8.4%
    - High school graduate or equivalent: 32.6%
    - Some college, no degree: 20.9%
    - Associate's degree: 7%
    - Bachelor's degree: 16.5%
    - Graduate or professional degree: 9.6%

  • #41. Oklahoma

    - Education index: 93.92
    - Less than high school: 4.2%
    - 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 8.3%
    - High school graduate or equivalent: 31.5%
    - Some college, no degree: 23.6%
    - Associate's degree: 7.6%
    - Bachelor's degree: 16.6%
    - Graduate or professional degree: 8.3%