Texas ranks among the least educated states, according to a new study
When it comes to a population's education, Texans fall in the back of the pack compared to the rest of the country. A recent WalletHub report found that the state was the 12th least educated in America.
The study factored in a total of 20 metrics surrounding educational attainment, quality of schools, and achievement gaps between minorities and genders.
Texas ranked No. 39 overall, however the state managed to rank No. 19 regarding the quality of education. In fact, the state was right in the middle of the pack at No. 26 in the ranking of average university quality. The Lone Star State's downfall might have been coming in at No. 43 in the educational attainment rank.
The top five most educated states according to WalletHub were Massachusetts, Maryland, Vermont, Connecticut, and Colorado, respectively. Earning the titles of least educated states were Mississippi, West Virginia, Louisiana, Arkansas, and Alabama, in that order.
When WalletHub compared the states' annual median household income rankings to the overall education ranking, the results seemed to be pretty proportional for the states. However, Texas was a bit of an outlier with a better ranking of No. 21 on the income report compared to its No. 39 spot in education.
Last fall, WalletHub found that the state's teaching environment wasn't anything to write home about either. That study factored in teacher salaries, classroom size, and per-student funding from the state, among other aspects.
The 86th Texas Legislature started earlier this month, and at the top of the agenda for the governor is school finance, according to the Texas Tribune, but legislators will be demanding results for whatever funding plan is put in place. As of Friday, however, the Tribune reports that there haven't been very many bills addressing education — and none had outcomes-based incentives.
Last legislative session, a bill established the Texas Commission on Public School finance, according to the Texas Education Agency. The commission recommended a total of $800 million be spent on incentives for improving reading levels and keeping students on track for graduation.
Only time will tell whether legislators take into account the commission's results in the current legislative session, which is expected to conclude on May 27.