**Sources:**Annie E. Casey Foundation NEA Census

**Data:**Excel

**Last updated:**March 21, 2015

Most likely, the relationship goes both ways- students probably do better in math because they have college educated parents that have the income and knowledge to give them the best odds of doing well in math and students who do well in math are more likely to go on to get college degrees themselves. Ultimately, states that value education highly are likely to do better on both scores.

Another striking aspect of the data is the strong tendency for blue states to have both higher math scores and more college degrees. The best state overall is Massachusetts (in the very top right corner) with 55% of its 8th graders passing the math test and 38% of its population over 25 holding a college degree. The best Republican state is Kansas with 38% of its 8th graders passing the math test and 30% of its population holding a college degree. The worst state for college degrees is West Virginia (at 17%) and the worst state for 8th grade math is Alabama (at 20%).

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