If there’s anything we here in NJ can be proud of, it’s our education system. Right? After all, New Jersey is one of the most educated states in the nation, the latest Census data shows.

In fact, according to nj.com, New Jersey ranks eighth in the U.S. for residents with college degrees. More than half of New Jersey's residents have an associate degree or higher, according to the census from Oct 23, 2023,

We all know we've got something to brag about – who wouldn't be proud when New Jersey shines as one of the most educated states in the nation?

SEE MORE: Shocking and sad reason for many car deaths in New Jersey


But a new study from Teach Simple shows that education experts analyzed each state across the U.S., considering 18 factors to gauge their education standards.

Each state received separate scores for academic achievement and overall education index.

These factors included average ACT and grade 8 scores, adult education participation, library usage, high school dropout rates, college enrollment, and the percentage of the population with bachelor's degrees.


New Jersey emerged as the third-best state for education, with an academic score of 69.28 and an overall index score of 65.42.

Notably, 5.2 percent of New Jersey's public students are enrolled in gifted and talented programs, far surpassing Rhode Island's 0.2 percent. Additionally, New Jersey boasts a low high school dropout rate of 3.25 percent, compared to New Mexico's 8.51 percent.

The state excels in higher education, with a score of 72.55 out of 100. Its public high schools achieve impressive adjusted cohort graduation rates, with an average of 91 students per school.


According to Teach Simple's study, the top five most educated states are Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, Utah, and Virginia.

Is anyone still surprised that we come out so close to the top?

New Jersey high school graduation rates

The lists below show 4-year graduation rates for New Jersey public schools for the 2020-21 school year. The statewide graduation rate fell slightly, from 91% in 2019-20 to 90.6%.

The lists, which are sorted by county and include a separate list for charter schools, also include a second graduation rate, which excludes students whose special education IEPs allow them to qualify for diplomas despite not meeting typical coursework and attendance requirements.

Columns with an asterisk or 'N' indicate there was no data or it was suppressed to protect student privacy.

Gallery Credit: Michael Symons

These are the best NJ high schools for sports

Stacker put together a list of the best high schools for sports across New Jersey — using data from Niche that included sports championships, family surveys, student enrollment, athletic participation rate and sports options. Here's the top 25.

Gallery Credit: Stacker

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