Texas smarter than california

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Last updated on July 27th, 2017 at 04:59 am

Vermont is the smartest US state. Arizona is the stupidest. So claims a ranking system based, in part, on student-teacher ratios and percentage of children in public schools. Here’s the complete list:

1. Vermont
2. Connecticut
3. Massachusetts
4. New Jersey
5. Maine
6. Minnesota
7. Virginia
8. Wisconsin
9. Montana
10. New York
11. Pennsylvania
12. Nebraska
13. Kansas
14. Iowa
15. New Hampshire
16. Rhode Island
17. Wyoming
18. South Dakota
19. Maryland
20. North Dakota
21. Missouri
22. North Carolina
23. Colorado
24. Texas
25. Delaware
26. Indiana
27. Michigan
28. Idaho
29. South Carolina
30. Washington
31. Ohio
32. Illinois
33. Utah
34. West Virginia
35. Kentucky
36. Florida
37. Arkansas
38. Oregon
39. Oklahoma
40. Georgia
41. Tennessee
42. Hawaii
43. Alabama
44. Alaska
45. Louisiana
46. California
47. Nevada
48. New Mexico
49. Mississippi
50. Arizona

Posted by Tim B. on 10/25/2005 at 11:26 PM
    1. They used something like that after the election to show people who voted Bush lived in the dumbest states – I’ll chase up the link if I can.

      Posted by JamesP on 2005 10 26 at 01:15 AM • permalink


    1. I, for one, believe it. You should sit in on one of my classes at San Francisco State University. I think California is ranked too high.

      Posted by ekw on 2005 10 26 at 01:16 AM • permalink


    1. The Voted for Bush = Stupid one was discredited a little while after.

      Posted by JamesP on 2005 10 26 at 01:18 AM • permalink


    1. Well, I can’t speak for every state, but Nevada is in the right place (#47).

      I live in Las Vegas, and most of the people who come here to gamble clearly have no math skills at all.

      Posted by JayC on 2005 10 26 at 01:21 AM • permalink


    1. Arizona always gets the low end of these things, and I guess I can’t argue:  My teachers were dumb as wood, and I was in the advanced classes in the best schools.

      However, I dispute any result that turns up Vermont as our intellectual powerhouse.  Ha ha.  Sorry.  We’re not that dumb.

      Posted by Sortelli on 2005 10 26 at 01:21 AM • permalink


    1. Also, saw one of these lists just a couple of days ago and Arizona was 47 and I think Massachusetts was number 1.  MAKE UP YOUR MINDS, SMARTY HEADS.

      Posted by Sortelli on 2005 10 26 at 01:23 AM • permalink


    1. Vermont gives great autumn – or I should say ‘fall’.  Favourable people/tree ratios, no doubt.

      Posted by Inurbanus on 2005 10 26 at 01:33 AM • permalink


    1. ‘Season of maths and mellow fruitfulness.’

      Posted by Inurbanus on 2005 10 26 at 01:34 AM • permalink


    1. 46. California

      Golly!  The near-dumbest state in the union happens to be hyper-liberal and panders shamelessly to <strike>illegal aliens</strike> workers not currently carrying their documentation.

      And their kids.

      Who are legion.

      And who don’t habla English.

      I would infer something from this, but I’m too thtoopid.

      To do so.

      Posted by zeppenwolf on 2005 10 26 at 01:54 AM • permalink


    1. I’m a Vermonter and it’s 32 degrees here. We’ve had ferocious wind, rain, and sleet for the past 20 hours. Over the next 5 months, it’s going to get worse.

      Now let me see if I have this right—people in Arizona are dumber than us? A lot dumber??? hahaha

      Posted by HelenW on 2005 10 26 at 01:57 AM • permalink


    1. OT, when was the last time you saw the MSM mention an opinion poll’s sampling error?

      Answer: when it shows Bush’s approval rating increasing.

      Poll: Bush would lose an election if held this year
      In the poll, 42 percent of those interviewed approved of the way the president is handling his job and 55 percent disapproved. In the previous poll, released October 17, 39 percent approved of Bush’s job performance—the lowest number of his presidency—and 58 percent disapproved.

      However, all the numbers are within the poll’s sampling error of plus or minus 3 percentage points, so it’s possible that the public’s opinion has not changed at all.

      Posted by Art Vandelay on 2005 10 26 at 02:04 AM • permalink


    1. So that stuff about all the kids from Lake Wobegon being above average is probably true.

      I think that the polygamists in Utah and Arizona are dragging down our score, though.

      But at least, none of us are banning the use of piggy banks.


      Posted by AST on 2005 10 26 at 02:05 AM • permalink


    1. #9 Actually, the kids learn english pretty quick.

      #10 Eh… you have the option of visiting us during the winter months… and getting the hell out of Dodge when the 120 degree summers roll around.  Living here year ‘round is only smart if you got central air. 😀

      Posted by Sortelli on 2005 10 26 at 02:11 AM • permalink


    1. Also, you should see what happens when we get a little snow here in the Tucson valley.  It’s like the monolith from 2001 lands and we all go bonkers at this mysterious white substance from the sky.  If it sticks to the ground for at least a minute we can’t close the roads fast enough!

      Posted by Sortelli on 2005 10 26 at 02:14 AM • permalink


    1. Hmm. Let’s have a look at something here:

      46. California
      47. Nevada
      48. New Mexico
      50. Arizona

      All of these states have a very high number of illegal immigrants *cough* I mean undocumented migrants, and the numbers of school-age children in those states has more than doubled in the past decade. A large percentage of these children speak little or no English. On the other hand, many of the states at the top of the list…

      1. Vermont
      2. Connecticut
      3. Massachusetts
      5. Maine

      …have lost large numbers of school-age population—and I don’t imagine the teachers’ unions would allow staff reductions just because the number of students has declined.

      On top of everything else, student-teacher ratios are utterly meaningless as a determination of “dumb” anyway. An engaging and inspiring teacher with 35 students in a class will be much more effective than a dull and unispiring teacher with 20 students.

      I’m not defending the US public education system, which is pathetic nationwide, but there are many other factors that should be considered when coming up with these lists.

      Posted by Spiny Norman on 2005 10 26 at 02:16 AM • permalink


    1. JayC—

      Aren’t most of the people coming to Vegas to gamble coming there from places other than Nevada, though?

      Posted by Brian Tiemann on 2005 10 26 at 02:17 AM • permalink


    1. “Vermont shines in many key areas of education. A high percentage of its students excel in reading, writing and math. In addition, schools in Vermont have smaller class sizes and lower pupil-teacher ratios than in most other states.”

      One other note: Vermont is also the richest and whitest state in the US. Which makes Screamin’ Howard Dean’s claims of creating the most “ethnically diverse” state government a bit ludicrous.

      Posted by Spiny Norman on 2005 10 26 at 02:25 AM • permalink


    1. And to save Phillips Adams posting
      Australia came 51st unless of course they get us mixed up with Austria. God I hate those polls saying the US have have a monopoly on kids who don’t know geography too.

      Posted by the nailgun on 2005 10 26 at 02:48 AM • permalink


    1. I can see the state advertizing lines now, “Texas. We may not be the smartest state, but we’re WAY smarter than California!”

      Posted by Texas Bob on 2005 10 26 at 02:53 AM • permalink


    1. Bush was born in No. 2.

      Posted by Quentin George on 2005 10 26 at 03:01 AM • permalink


    1. Texas Bob – it will never fit on a number plate.

      Posted by noir on 2005 10 26 at 03:05 AM • permalink


    1. Quentin – sounds messy but consistent with the left’s opinion of him.

      Posted by noir on 2005 10 26 at 03:05 AM • permalink


    1. Hehehe, trying to find a smartest part of america is like trying to find the smartest slug. They’re all populated by yanks which precludes a lot of intelligence.

      PS hi Andrea ;-P

      Posted by T-SAW on 2005 10 26 at 03:18 AM • permalink


    1. Good, intelligent commentary, T-Saw. You must be from one of those ‘smart’ states!

      Posted by JamesP on 2005 10 26 at 03:45 AM • permalink


    1. Oh, and:

      PS hi Andrea ;-P

      Why do you wink your eye and poke your tongue out at the same time? Are you retarded

      Posted by JamesP on 2005 10 26 at 03:46 AM • permalink


    1. # 23 T-SAW . . . now you wouldn’t be the old “Timmy’s Still A Wingnut” now, would you?

      Posted by Oafish and Infantile on 2005 10 26 at 04:12 AM • permalink


    1. nailgun, #18 – you’ve also saved me the effort of a Philip Adams post. I thought I had that one nailed, pardon the pun.

      Posted by SwinishCapitalist on 2005 10 26 at 04:12 AM • permalink


    1. What’s the point of including “percent of school-age kids in public schools”? Is the assumption that states with lower private school attendence simply must have better public schools, or something?

      Incidentally, as Spiny Norman already alluded to, given the various metrics included in the study it’s hardly accurate to say that the results are a measure of smart/stupid.

      Posted by PW on 2005 10 26 at 05:02 AM • permalink


    1. States were graded on 21 factors, including student achievement and attendance, positive outcomesstrong student-teacher relationships and school district efficiency. Other factors are the number of high school graduates, reading, writing and math proficiency, percent of school-age kids in public schools, high school drop out rates, student-teacher ratios and class size.

      Emphasis is mine. From those, this looks to have a subjective ranking in some regards.  That “positive outcomes” factor….what does that mean?

      Also, Morgan Quitno Press is a company that “…specializes in reference books that compare states and cities in several different subject areas”, and claims to be independent.  This doesn’t disqualify them from doing this, but I have to wonder about any firm that fills the niche market of comparing states and cities.  They must make money off of this, but it’s rather like movie reviewers…..do you trust their products?

      Posted by The_Real_JeffS on 2005 10 26 at 05:15 AM • permalink


    1. I think it actually highlights who’s had the most left-wing indoctrination.  That’s if your teachers were like the useless fools who “taught” me during the time I was incarcerated in the UK states’ adolescent creche scheme.

      Posted by Rob Read on 2005 10 26 at 06:20 AM • permalink


    1. Yeah, T-SAW is the same loser. I see he has obtained a new Yahoo account; my efforts to get Yahoo to delete his old one (for the obscene emails he kept sending me, a violation of their member conduct rules) must have been successful. I have gone ahead and banned him again.

      Yawn. Trolls are so stupid.

      Posted by Andrea Harris, Administrator on 2005 10 26 at 07:26 AM • permalink


    1. This looks like a list of states ranked by how powerful the education industry is in that state, or, to put it another way, how “schooled” the population is.  The U.S. is in serious need of de-schooling, as recommended by Ivan Illich.

      We have way too many people who think they know something just because they’ve been loyal customers of the industry for 16 years.

      Posted by Dave in Chicago on 2005 10 26 at 09:02 AM • permalink


    1. Hm.  Ohio, stuck in the boring middle (actually, a tiny bit below), as usual.  Figures.

      Could be worse, I suppose.  We could be California.

      Posted by RebeccaH on 2005 10 26 at 10:34 AM • permalink


    1. That’s strange:  A large part of the ranking seems to come from the quality of the public school system in each state; yet Indiana is #26, and my relatives there tell me that no-one who has the choice will put their kids in the public schools.

      Posted by jic on 2005 10 26 at 10:41 AM • permalink


    1. #28 – I’m confused about that, too.  Does having a high percentage of students in public school add or subtract points?

      Posted by VKI on 2005 10 26 at 12:41 PM • permalink


    1. Louisiana ought to move up a couple of notches because the cesspool that was the New Orleans public school system was drained.

      Teacher-pupil ratio has virtually nothing to do with education quality. Class sizes have have been going down for years along with test scores.  On the other hand unionized school payrolls have been going up.  In a typical 50 minute period is a 30-1 ratio with 1m40s / pupil significantly worse than 3m20s for a 15-1 ratio?  The well worn “individual attention” argument doesn’t even seem valid until maybe less than a 10-1 ratio.

      Posted by deadman on 2005 10 26 at 05:04 PM • permalink


    1. hmmm, I thought the way to measure intelligence was to administer an I.Q. test.

      Oh well silly me for thinking that there’s be an easy, replicable and verifianle method of doing this.

      Posted by jpaulg on 2005 10 26 at 07:09 PM • permalink


    1. WHAT? They didn’t rank the District of Columbia? Wonder where they’d have finished? Is there a ranking lower than 51st?

      And New York (state) finished 10th? Must be joking. NYC has 1,000,000 school children, and some of the worst schools, graduation, and drop-out rates in the country.

      Looks like a back-tested scheme favoring high per pupil expenditures (student/teacher ratios), in heavily taxed northeastern states, i.e. New Jersey (notoriously bad schools in Newark, Jersey City, and Camden, but with the highest state-wide per pupil expenditures in the USA) at #4! While lower taxed New Hampshire is at #14.

      Spiney Norman fleshed out the rest of the critical (de-bunking) observations, it would seem.

      Posted by Forbes on 2005 10 26 at 07:12 PM • permalink


    1. HelenW—the US will be pulling out of Vermont shortly.  Obviously there’s no withstanding the brutal Vermont winter.

      Posted by richard mcenroe on 2005 10 26 at 08:42 PM • permalink


    1. I moved from Seattle to AZ two years ago, and let me just say this:
      What Starbucks stores are to Seattle, tattoo parlors are to Phoenix.

      Posted by Sarah Brabazon-Biggar on 2005 10 26 at 09:02 PM • permalink


    1. Sarah—O lucky me.  In LA, you can get both in the same strip mall.

      Posted by richard mcenroe on 2005 10 26 at 09:25 PM • permalink


    1. the US will be pulling out of Vermont shortly

      Or maybe vice-versa?

      Second Vermont Republic

      Posted by guinsPen on 2005 10 26 at 09:29 PM • permalink


    1. Richard, of course. Not to mention get your nails done.

      Posted by Sarah Brabazon-Biggar on 2005 10 27 at 04:11 AM • permalink


  1. Reason No. 1 to ignore this poll: Jersey ranks fourth. This is where people twice what a house is worth, tax their grandparents into the street, elect legendarily corrupt politicians and see nothing wrong with the Sopranos. And don’t get me started about what they do when they get to the Shore. Parkway exit numbers are higher than their IQs.

    Posted by Gary from Jersey on 2005 10 27 at 09:20 AM • permalink