California doesn’t fare well in a new report issued Thursday that provides a nationwide snapshot of how states are doing in educating their students.
Overall, the nation received a C grade. No state received an A. Massachusetts and New Jersey ranked the highest with a grade of B. At the bottom were New Mexico and Nevada, both earning D grades.
The report looked at education funding, K-12 academic achievement, early education participation, and other indicators that point to a student’s “chance for success.”
Family income matters a great deal when it comes to preschool enrollment, according to the report's findings. Nationwide, children from wealthy families are enrolled in preschool at 1.5 times the rate of their peers from middle and low-income families.
In California, 40.5 percent of families in poverty had enrolled their 3- or 4-year-old in preschool in 2013, compared to nearly 60 percent of families above the poverty line.
Many of California's children are growing up in households where parents do not speak fluent English. The state was ranked next to last in this category. It also ranked 49th in terms of adults who are employed year-round and full-time in the labor force.
Where the state did better was in the area of school enrollment. About 48 percent of all 4-year-olds are in preschool. That’s one percent about the national average. But while there’s 90 percent enrollment for half-day kindergarten, California ranks 48th for enrollment in full-day kindergarten, with just over half of all children attending school all day.