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19. Montana

May 5, 2018

Photo Credit: Witold Skrypczak / Alamy Stock Photo

Overall education rank: 19thAcademic performance: 20thResource availability: 20thGraduation rate: 24th (85.6%)

According to NAEP test scores, Montana’s students are stronger in math than in reading. Although the student-to-teacher ratio is a healthy 14:1 (ranked 18th on this list), Montana’s rural areas have struggled in recent years to attract and retain teachers, due to issues such as low pay and a small-town culture that does not appeal to everyone. Montana does allow students to opt-in to a “college and career ready” diploma, providing stronger academic options for high-performing students.