Academic Achievement

Relative to other states, student performance in Virginia is higher than average. Fourth graders stand 9 percentage points above the national average of 34% in the percentage at or above the proficient level on the NAEP reading exam.

Academic Achievement for Low-Income and Minority Students

Virginia earns a solid grade on academic achievement for low-income and minority students. Thirty-two percent of Hispanic 4th graders score at or above the proficient level on the NAEP math exam.

Return on Investment

Student achievement in Virginia is high relative to state spending after controlling for cost of living. 

Truth in Advertising: Student Proficiency

Virginia posts below average marks on the credibility of its student proficiency scores. The grade is based on the difference between the percentage of students identified as proficient in reading and math on 2011 state exams and the percentage identified as proficient on the 2011 NAEP reading and math tests.

Postsecondary and Workforce Readiness

Virginia earns an excellent grade preparing its students for college and careers. Twenty-eight students out of 100 pass an AP exam, the third highest rate in the country. 

21st Century Teacher Force

Virginia does an average job of creating a strong teacher workforce. The Old Dominion State does a good job retaining effective teachers. 

Parental Options

Virginia does a poor job providing parents with strong school choice options. It has a weak charter school law, with few students enrolled in schools of choice.

Data Quality

Virginia earns a very good grade collecting and reporting high-quality education data. It has a longitudinal data system, provides stakeholders with relevant data on school performance, and links student performance data with teacher data.


Virginia receives a good grade employing technology to provide quality instruction and personalized learning. Students have access to an array of high-quality digital learning options.

International Competitiveness

Virginia earns a very high grade preparing its students to compete in a global economy, with almost 14 students out of 100 passing an AP STEM exam.

Fiscal Responsibility

Virginia receives very low marks on fiscal responsibility. Only 65% of the state’s pension is funded, and its last contribution was 59%.