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24/7 Wall St.: States with the Best and Worst Schools

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The Best School Systems

1. Maryland
State score: 87.5
Overall state grade: B+
High school graduation rate: 77.9% (13th highest)
Per pupil expenditure: $12,953 (16th highest)

With an overall grade of B+, Maryland’s schools are considered the best in the country for the fifth year in a row. Maryland was just one of five states in 2010 with 100% of school districts spending more per pupil than the U.S. average. In addition, a whopping 43.8% of 11th and 12th grade students scored a 3 or better on an advanced placement exam, the highest percentage in the country by more than six points and way over the national rate of 21.8%. State officials credited the strong rankings to, among other things, reforms in student standards and teacher evaluations thanks to funding from the federal Race-to-the-Top Initiative and a $50 million federal grant to improve early childhood education.

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The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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