K-12 Budget: $4.9 billion
Massachusetts took the second spot in the overall Quality Counts analysis after leading the rankings for four consecutive years.
The state led the K-12 achievement rankings, and it outperformed all other states in several key academic indicators: 4th grade math and reading scores and 8th grade math and reading scores.
Massachusetts also ranked fifth on academic equity factors.
It ranked 11th on the report’s School Finance Index, and it took the 41st spot on funding equity. Despite some disparities, almost every district in Massachusetts has per-pupil funding that is above the national average.
State leaders track much of the state’s success in education to the 1993 passage of the Massachusetts Education Reform Act, a broad law that called for higher standards, strong accountability, and increased funding for schools across the state. The act also established charter schools in Massachusetts.
The state is still examining ways to improve equity. In 2015, a commission said the current education funding formula falls short in several categories.
Lawmakers considered plans to rework the model in the 2019 session, but they broke for August recess without settling on a path forward.
For more about Massachusetts’ Quality Counts score, click here.
Note: Enrollment is for the 2018-19 school year, and budget figure is for the 2019 fiscal year.
Research assistance from intern Héctor Alejandro Arzate.