The good schools are good, the bad schools are bad, and there’s a difference between good and bad, according to a new analysis by the National Governors Association.
The group said that while the nation is at a disadvantage for foreign-born students because of its high-achieving and low-achiever student body, it has made strides in recent years.
“We are the best place to send your child to school, and it’s time we stopped playing catch-up,” the organization said in a report that ranks the 50 states and the District of Columbia on its own list of the best places to send children to school.
The report was released Thursday, the same day the Trump administration announced its intention to boost funding for the nation’s public school system.
It says the nation has about $2 trillion in unfunded federal education liabilities and that about 2.5 million students would receive financial aid if they could attend public schools, including $800 billion for early childhood education.
But that’s not good enough, according the group.
“While we continue to struggle with our finances, the fact is we have over 2 million children in public school, we have one of the highest teacher retention rates in the country, and our graduation rates are the highest in the nation,” said Jim Manley, a vice president for the group, in a statement.
“If we want our children to succeed in the workforce, we need to provide them with the best education possible.”
The NGA’s report said that even though a national school-choice movement has emerged in recent months, the number of eligible children in the U.S. is limited.
It cites a study by the Partnership for Public Education, which estimates that about 60 percent of eligible school-age children in America are unable to afford a private school education.
In its report, the NGA says that one-third of eligible American children attend private school.
But only about one-fifth of those students receive a public school education, the group says.
On the bright side, the report says that states that offer higher-quality public schools are more likely to have more children attending them.
It says that, on average, students who attend public and private schools in each state have similar levels of academic achievement, with about a third having higher levels of standardized test scores and about a fifth having a high level of graduation rates.
But in some cases, those students may be less likely to get an education at home.
As a result, it says, there is a huge opportunity for parents to choose the school of their choice and, through that choice, their children will have access to an education that is more fulfilling and prepares them to succeed.
And, in states with large populations of low-income and minority students, the nation also has the opportunity to build a higher level of public school equity, it said.