Michigan Improves Ranking in National Report on Top States for Teachers

Stacy Bogard

By Stacy Bogard, CAE, MASB Assistant Director of Communications, PR & Marketing

DashBoard, Oct. 11, 2017

After going to print on the Fall 2017 LeaderBoard magazine1, which noted Michigan ranked 31 in Wallethub’s 2016 Best States for Teachers report, the 2017 results were released and showed our state making a drastic leap to number 12.

Wallethub compared states and the District of Columbia across 21 key indicators, all adjusted for cost of living in each, including teachers’ income growth potential, pupil-teacher ratio and teacher safety. To create the total score, the indicators were grouped into two categories of Opportunity & Competition and Academic & Work Environment. Michigan rose from 16th in Opportunity & Competition in 2016 to fifth in 2017; our state also jumped from 42nd in Academic & Work Environment to 31st.

In a couple of the key indicators, Michigan held onto its number one ranking in the highest annual salaries (again, adjusted for cost of living), and was also in the top five for the lowest projected competition, i.e., fewest teachers per student in the year 2024.2

While it’s encouraging to see these improvements, Michigan is still struggling with low enrollment in university and college teaching programs, restrictive laws and budget cuts. Read articles on these topics and more in the Fall 2017 LeaderBoard, Who Will Teach Our Kids?

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1 Bogard, S. National Perspective: Best States for Teachers. LeaderBoard magazine, Michigan Association of School Boards, Fall 2017.

2 Bernardo, R. 2017’s Best & Worst States for Teachers. Retrieved from, Oct. 9, 2017.