Smartest State Award 2004-2005FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


Contact: Scott Morgan, 785-841-3534

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Massachusetts Repeats as the

Nation’s Smartest State

New Mexico Ranks Last in Education State Rankings Annual Survey

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These Links for More Information:

Ranking of All 50 States |Factors | MQ Home | Methodology | About Us

Last Year's Press Release | Prior Years' Rankings

See Dave Barry's Take on our first Award

Click Here for the Complete 2004 Smartest State Award Publication


LAWRENCE, KS. Massachusetts, home to the nation’s first public elementary school and the first college in North America has another education distinction to claim. For the second year in a row, the Bay State is winner of the 2004 Smartest State Award. This honor is announced annually in Education State Rankings, a reference book from Morgan Quitno Press, a Lawrence, Kansas-based independent research and publishing company. At the opposite end of the scale, New Mexico comes in as the lowest ranking state for the third straight year.

The Smartest State Award is based on 21 factors from Education State Rankings, an annual reference book that compares the 50 United States in hundreds of elementary and secondary education categories. The revised, third edition of Education State Rankings will be published this week. Factors considered include per pupil expenditures, public high school graduation rates, the percent of staff who are school district administrators, student reading, writing and math proficiency, pupil-teacher ratios and teacher salaries as a percent of average annual pay.

"The Smartest State Award recognizes those states that are committed to students and teachers, emphasize excellence in the classroom and ensure that public schools are safe and efficiently-run,” said Scott Morgan, President of Morgan Quitno Press.

“As in last year’s competition, Massachusetts has an impressive record,” said Morgan. “Its students are some of the nation’s most proficient in reading, writing and math. In addition, schools in Massachusetts have low pupil-teacher ratios, as well as a low percentage of staff who are school district administrators.”

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

The Smartest State Award is one of six 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, the Safest and Most Dangerous States and Most Improved State. Each award or designation is based on data from annual Morgan Quitno reference publications.

Additional information about the third 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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