The 5 Best and Worst States for Girls to Grow Up

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A new report looks at the health and well-being of girls across the country.

Some U.S. states are better than others for raising a daughter, according to “The State of Girls: Thriving or Surviving,” a report by the Girl Scout Research Institute.

The analysis examined physical health and safety, emotional health, economic well-being, education and extracurricular activities, as well as demographic trends.

“It has to do partly with strong education,” lead researcher Mark Mather, a demographer with the Population Reference Bureau, said.

The top five states for girls’ health and well-being are:

  • New Hampshire
  • North Dakota
  • South Dakota
  • Massachusetts
  • Vermont

At the bottom, starting with the worst-ranked state overall:

  • Mississippi
  • Nevada
  • New Mexico
  • Arizona
  • Oklahoma

Overall, The Huffington Post said that “states in the Midwest, Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions are believed to be better for girls. States in the South tended to receive lower rankings.”

The report said states that offer preschool and have lower high school dropout statistics tend to rank higher.

The report also noted that Hispanic and African-American girls “face significant challenges in making successful transitions to adulthood.”

Click here to see a map of the rankings. Click here to access more detailed report information and specific information about each state.

Montana, my home state, ranked 32nd. Ouch.

How does your state rank when it comes to girls’ well-being? Share your comments below or on our Facebook page.

Stacy Johnson

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