Arkansas Ranks 8th in Nation for Overall Education

LITTLE ROCK, AR - Arkansas, long derided in educational surveys, has risen dramatically to eighth in the nation for overall quality in a new study.

The "Quality Counts 2008" study released yesterday gave Arkansas a B-minus grade, while the nation as a whole received a C.  Strong scores in standards and assessments, school financing and teacher ratings lifted Arkansas' score.  Parents' low incomes and low number of adults with college educations pulled down the state's overall score.

Arkansas Department of Education Commissioner Ken James says state legislators, who worked to increase school funding and improve the educational system, should be very proud.

Education Week produced the study, along with the Editorial Projects in Education Research Center.

Overall, New York ranked first, followed by Massachusetts and Maryland.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)