The study, called Quality Counts 2010 and conducted by Education Week, ranks and grades each state (and D.C.) on criteria such as "Chance for Success," "K-12 Achievement," and "Teaching Profession."
The United States, as a whole, was given a score of 75.9 for a grade of "C."
Maryland ranked first in the country with an overall score of 87.5, a grade of "B+." Virginia ranked fourth with a score of 82.3, a grade of "B-."
The red pen wasn't so generous to D.C. The District ranked last overall with a score of 68.3 for a grade of "D+."
According to the report’s executive summary, the "Chance for Success" index looks at the impact of the state’s education system on early childhood, the time between kindergarten and high school graduation, and adulthood and career.
On that scale, Maryland ranked 6th with a grade of "B+," Virginia 9th with a grade of "B," and D.C. 31st with a grade of "C+."
When measuring "K-12 Achievement," the study considers, among other things, achievement gaps between high and low poverty students along with math and reading scores.
Maryland ranked 2nd with a grade of "B," Virginia 6th with a grade of "C," and the District 50th, receiving a grade of "F."
The "Teaching Profession" assesses state policy regarding teacher quality, incentives, recruiting, and retention.
Maryland ranked 5th with a grade of "B," Virginia 13th with a grade of "B-," and D.C. 49th with a grade of "D-."