Education Week just named Maryland public schools the best in the nation for the fourth year in a row. Let's take a second to acknowledge that accomplishment. Okay, time's up. Now, let's take a few minutes and look below the surface. Maryland actually received a B+ grade (87.8%), and no state received an A. Maybe it's not totally surprising, but it is sobering that none of the 50 states can boast of having a truly excellent school system. The average score was 76.5 percent, a solid C, with the likes of Nebraska and South Dakota slipping into D territory. In Maryland, we nearly got a D (71.7%) in the Equity in K-12 Achievement category, and we scored a C in Teacher Accountability and a C+ in Assessments. So there's still plenty of work to be done, #1 ranking or not. And let's hope the poor folks in South Dakota recognize that getting F's in Teacher Incentives and College Readiness is probably connected to the F the state received for Spending.