Just last month, a study said that New Jersey was the top state in which to raise a family, and now another one says we’re #6.

In WalletHub.com’s annual ranking, we moved up from 7th last year (and 8th two years ago) on the strength of our education and child care system along with high median income. The categories being measured were family fun, health and safety, education and child care, affordability, and socioeconomics.

Within those five categories, they looked at 52 key indicators of family-friendliness, including median family income, housing costs, unemployment, and number of neighborhoods with parks, among others. We ranked 18th in family fun, 26th in health and safety, 1st in education and child care, 1st in affordability, and 19th in socioeconomics. We’re in the top five for median family income, which helps with the affordability factor; we also have the second lowest infant mortality rate, and the fifth fewest violent crimes per capita. Our low separation and divorce rate (we’re 3rd) helped us in the socioeconomic metric. I feel like we should have ranked higher in family fun, though; we have the largest amusement park on the east coast, a world class aquarium, an excellent science center and miles of beaches and boardwalks with more rides and games.

Source: WalletHub

Wallethub says that the best state for raising a family is Massachusetts, followed by Minnesota, North Dakota, New York, and Vermont. The bottom five are: Oklahoma, Louisiana, West Virginia, Mississippi (not last!), and New Mexico (#50). Pennsylvania is 23rd.

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Doyle. Any opinions expressed are Bill Doyle's own.

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