June 21, 2011

WALTER RUSSELL MEAD: Blue State Schools: The Shame Of A Nation.

When it come to excellence in education, red states rule — at least according to a panel of experts assembled by Tina Brown’s Newsweek. Using a set of indicators ranging from graduation rate to college admissions and SAT scores, the panel reviewed data from high schools all over the country to find the best public schools in the country.

The results make depressing reading for the teacher unions: the very best public high schools in the country are heavily concentrated in red states.

Three of the nation’s ten best public high schools are in Texas — the no-income tax, right-to-work state that blue model defenders like to characterize as America at its worst. Florida, another no-income tax, right-to-work state long misgoverned by the evil and rapacious Bush dynasty, has two of the top ten schools.

Newsweek isn’t alone with these shocking results. Another top public school list, compiled by the Washington Post, was issued in May. Texas and Florida rank number one and number two on that list’s top ten as well.

There’s something else interesting about the two lists: on both lists only one of the top ten public schools was located in a blue state. . . . There were no top ten schools on either list from blue New England states like Massachusetts, Vermont and Connecticut. Nor were there any in the top 25. By contrast, Alabama made both the Newsweek and the Washington Post top ten.

Yet another stereotype that’s flipped.

UPDATE: Reader Tom Scott emails:

I was born and raised in Wisconsin- near Madison- and I followed closely the coverage of the recent Scott Walker protests by teachers in Madison. Ann Althouse and Meade provided outstanding coverage of that. Incidentally, I bookmarked Althouse because of Instapundit links some time ago.

This first school listed in the Newsweek list is Brookfield at 174 Brookfield…Brookfield, seems that place was in the news recently. Something about Judge Prosser.

P.S. If I were Amy Chua I might consider moving to Dallas or Bellevue.

The Wisconsin teachers, with their manifest disregard for student welfare, did not present a good face for blue-state public education. On the other hand, Wisconsin seems to be turning into a Red State, so . . . .

Meanwhile, a Blue State reader who requests anonymity emails:

Remember, you read it first at Iowahawk. With a single post he not only pantsed the whinging Krugman, he scooped Tina Brown by three months, and pre-emptively made Newsweek’s effort look silly for its failure to make a point while he was at it. Is there anything he can’t do?

The only hopeful news for blue state school systems in all this is that Iowahawk was educated in one.

A lagging indicator, that.

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