N.J. dominates U.S. News rankings for best schools by county

Hunterdon (2), Morris (3), Bergen (4), Somerset (9) head list of eight counties in Top 25 in nation

If the state needed more statistical evidence that it has the best school systems in the country, U.S. News & World Report provided it Tuesday during the release of its annual Healthiest Communities list.

When it came to the education benchmark, eight of New Jersey’s 21 counties were ranked in the Top 25 — including three in the Top 4 — of approximately 3,000 areas across the country.

The education ranking was one of 10 categories that U.S. News uses to gauge the Healthiest Communities.

The rankings and analysis platform, which explores how communities across the U.S. are working to improve the health of their residents, is done annually in collaboration with CVS Health and the Aetna Foundation.

New Jersey had two counties in the Top 25 overall rankings (click here for the story). But it was in the education metric where the state really excelled. Here’s a look at the rankings (counties could receive a score of up to 100):

  • No. 2: Hunterdon (94.9)
  • No. 3: Morris (94)
  • No. 4: Bergen (93.8)
  • No. 9: Somerset (88.7)
  • No. 15: Monmouth (87.5)
  • No. 17: Sussex (86.8)
  • No. 24: Warren (83.5)
  • No. 25: Middlesex (83)

For those wondering, Falls Church City (Virginia) was ranked No. 1. Virginia and Iowa both had three areas in the Top 25; Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York and Pennsylvania each had two.

For a complete look at the education list, click here.

The overall Healthiest Communities rankings were drawn from metrics in the following 10 categories: community vitality, equity, economy, education, environment, food & nutrition, population health, housing, infrastructure and public safety.

New Jersey had a county place in the Top 10 of just one other metric: public safety, where Bergen County ranked No. 7.