5 Dumbest States in America
BOSTON ( TheStreet) -- Minnesota residents are at the top of the class when it comes to educational achievement -- but South Carolinians get an "F," we have found.
A look at four educational factors -- average SAT math scores, percentage of citizens with high-school diplomas, how many young people attend college and how many high schoolers watch too much TV -- reveals wide variations among U.S. states.
For instance, just 8.2% of residents in first-place Minnesota lack high-school educations -- roughly half of the 15.9% rate in last-place South Carolina. Similarly, 80.4% of Minnesota's 18- to 24-year-olds are enrolled in college, compared with just 49.9% of similarly aged South Carolinians.
Boston College education professor Ana Martinez-Aleman attributes much of the variations to a single factor -- how much money states spend on public schools."There's a cause-and-effect relationship between school funding and educational achievement," says Martinez-Aleman, who also serves as editor of the scholarly publication Educational Policy Journal. The expert says some states have long showered their secondary-school and public-university systems with big bucks, while others have made funding about as hard to come by as an "A" in calculus. "Public-school funding is primarily derived from property taxes, and
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