American education is handled at the state level—from curricula and budgets to graduation requirements. This means we have no national standard. So, we must break down how America’s children are being educated, at least in broad strokes, measuring states vs other states.  Looking at new census data, the folks over at Stacker have done just that. When it comes to which states have the better educated people, the list reads pretty much how anyone who has been paying attention to which party encourages education and which party wants to burn everything down, ban books, and take authority away from teachers in any way they can, sans giving them a gun to fight off violent school shooters.

1st let us look at the bottom 5 states. We are leaving out Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico out of the mix here.

5o. West Virginia

Highest level of education completed:
– Less than 9th grade: 3.8%
– 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 8.1%
– High school graduate (includes equivalency): 40.1%
– Some college, no degree: 18.5%
– Associate’s degree: 7.7%
– Bachelor’s degree: 13.0%
– Graduate or professional degree: 8.8%

#49. Arkansas

Highest level of education completed:
– Less than 9th grade: 4.6%
– 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 7.7%
– High school graduate (includes equivalency): 34.1%
– Some college, no degree: 21.7%
– Associate’s degree: 7.7%
– Bachelor’s degree: 15.5%
– Graduate or professional degree: 8.8%

#48. North Dakota

Highest level of education completed:
– Less than 9th grade: 2.6%
– 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 4.1%
– High school graduate (includes equivalency): 26.1%
– Some college, no degree: 22.0%
– Associate’s degree: 14.1%
– Bachelor’s degree: 22.2%
– Graduate or professional degree: 8.9%

#47. Mississippi

Highest level of education completed:
– Less than 9th grade: 4.7%
– 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 9.7%
– High school graduate (includes equivalency): 29.8%
– Some college, no degree: 22.1%
– Associate’s degree: 10.5%
– Bachelor’s degree: 14.2%
– Graduate or professional degree: 9.0%

#46. Nevada

Highest level of education completed:
– Less than 9th grade: 5.3%
– 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 7.6%
– High school graduate (includes equivalency): 27.8%
– Some college, no degree: 24.6%
– Associate’s degree: 8.6%
– Bachelor’s degree: 17.0%
– Graduate or professional degree: 9.1%

Where one could call West Virginia a “blue” state, anyone with any sense knows that it really isn’t. The Governor ran as a Democrat, then quickly switched to Republican. They have one GOP Senator, and another who is the least “blue” Democrat in the Senate in Joe Manchin.

Nevada has made some recent strides in going blue, but is still, at best, a purple state that was very red for a long time.

The rest of the bottom of this list is solidly red. And if we went up the list, we wouldn’t find another even debatably “blue” state until we got to number 26, which is Michigan. That means almost the entire bottom half of this list has red and a few debatably purple states just about all the slots.

Now let us take a look at the top of the list.

#5. New York

Highest level of education completed:
– Less than 9th grade: 6.0%
– 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 6.6%
– High school graduate (includes equivalency): 25.2%
– Some college, no degree: 15.2%
– Associate’s degree: 8.9%
– Bachelor’s degree: 21.3%
– Graduate or professional degree: 16.8%

#4. Virginia

Highest level of education completed:
– Less than 9th grade: 3.7%
– 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 5.5%
– High school graduate (includes equivalency): 23.8%
– Some college, no degree: 18.7%
– Associate’s degree: 7.9%
– Bachelor’s degree: 22.8%
– Graduate or professional degree: 17.6%

#3. Connecticut

Highest level of education completed:
– Less than 9th grade: 4.0%
– 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 4.9%
– High school graduate (includes equivalency): 26.1%
– Some college, no degree: 16.6%
– Associate’s degree: 7.8%
– Bachelor’s degree: 22.3%
– Graduate or professional degree: 18.2%

#2. Maryland

Highest level of education completed:
– Less than 9th grade: 3.8%
– 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 5.4%
– High school graduate (includes equivalency): 23.9%
– Some college, no degree: 18.4%
– Associate’s degree: 6.9%
– Bachelor’s degree: 22.0%
– Graduate or professional degree: 19.5%

#1. Massachusetts

Highest level of education completed:
– Less than 9th grade: 4.2%
– 9th to 12th grade, no diploma: 4.6%
– High school graduate (includes equivalency): 23.2%
– Some college, no degree: 15.1%
– Associate’s degree: 7.7%
– Bachelor’s degree: 24.8%
– Graduate or professional degree: 20.4%

Unlike the bottom five, the top five is decidedly blue. And, similarly to the bottom of the list, most of the top spots beyond the top 5 remain in the blue column until we get to a purple state in Pennsylvania at number 16 and a red state in Kansas at number 18.

Again, we left Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico off the list and stuck exclusively with states. For the record, Washington D.C. was 1st and Puerto Rico was dead last on the list.