The Education Week Research Center ranked New Hampshire fourth in the country in its 2018 Quality Counts report, which examines the role of education in promoting positive outcomes throughout an individual’s lifetime, K-12 achievement indicators, and a school finance analysis.
According to Education Week, the Chance-for-Success Index examines the role of education in promoting positive outcomes throughout an individual’s lifetime (including early childhood indicators, family income, preschool and kindergarten enrollment, high school graduation rate, and adult employment rates). The school finance analysis evaluates spending on education and equity in funding across districts within a state. The K-12 Achievement Index, last updated in 2016, scores states on current academic performance, change over time, and poverty-based gaps.
“This year, New Hampshire finishes fourth among the 50 states and the District of Columbia, with an overall score of 83.7 out of 100 points and a grade of B. The nation, as a whole, posts a grade of C,” the report stated.
“Diving into the findings for the three graded indices, New Hampshire earns an A-minus in the Chance-for-Success category and ranks second. The average state earns a C-plus. In School Finance, New Hampshire receives a B-minus and ranks 13th. For the K-12 Achievement Index, last updated in the 2016 report, it finishes third with a grade of C-plus. The average state earns grades of C and C-minus in School Finance and K-12 Achievement, respectively.”
Models for Improvement
As the NH legislature, and public more broadly, are engaged in serious debate over a statewide voucher system and its potential impacts on student outcomes, it is worth noting that of the 6 states that have passed legislation to begin voucher programs akin to NH’s proposed education freedom savings account program, all received grades below the national average:
- Arizona: D+ (68.7)
- Florida: C (72.5)
- North Carolina: C- (70.6)
- Tennessee: C- (70.8)
- Mississippi: D+ (66.8)
- Nevada: D (65, the lowest performing state in the nation)
Massachusetts (B+), New Jersey (B), and Vermont (B) performed slightly better than New Hampshire and outperformed New Hampshire on the individual indicators.