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Connecticut Named the Smartest State

New Mexico Ranks Last

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2002 Rankings |Factors | MQ Home | Methodology | About Us

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LAWRENCE, KS. Connecticut, home to the first state constitution and the first newspaper, now adds winner of the first annual Smartest State Award to its list of accomplishments. Morgan Quitno Press, a Lawrence, Kansas-based independent research and publishing company, today named Connecticut winner of its first annual award measuring the quality of state elementary and secondary education. At the opposite end of the scale, New Mexico comes in as the lowest ranking state.

The first annual Smartest State Award is based on 21 education-related factors from Education State Rankings, a new annual reference book that compares the 50 United States in more than 400 education categories. The first edition of Education State Rankings was published this week. Factors considered include per pupil expenditures, public high school graduation rates, average class size, the percent of staff who are school district administrators, student reading and math proficiency, pupil-teacher ratios and teacher salaries.

"The Smartest State Award isn’t just about high student test scores," said Scott Morgan, president of Morgan Quitno Press. “The award measures a broad array of education factors that reflect a strong commitment to students and teachers, an emphasis on excellence in the classroom and the support of safe, well-run public schools.”

“Connecticut has a very solid record when it comes to education,” said Morgan. “Its excellence across-the-board in factors such as student proficiency in math and reading, class size and spending for education makes it a sure winner for the award.”

Rounding out the top five states with Connecticut were Vermont, Montana, New Jersey and Maine. Bringing up the lower end of the rankings scale were New Mexico in last place, Louisiana in 49th, Mississippi in 48th, Florida in 47th and Nevada in 46th.

The Smartest State Award is one of five designations announced annually by Morgan Quitno Press. The company's other annual announcements designate the nation’s Safest and Most Dangerous City and Metro Area, the Most Livable State, the Healthiest State and the Safest and Most Dangerous States. Each award or designation is based on data from annual Morgan Quitno reference publications.

Additional information about the first annual Smartest State Award, including rankings for all 50 states, a list of factors used to determine the results and an explanation of methodology, is available directly from Morgan Quitno Press at or by calling (785) 841-3534.

Morgan Quitno Press is an independent private research and publishing company located in Lawrence, Kansas. Founded in 1989, the company specializes in reference books and monthly reports that compare states and cities in several different subject areas. The corporation is not a subsidiary of any other company nor is it subsidized by any outside interest group. Its books are found in reference libraries throughout the United States and around the world.


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