Like other states in the New England region, Maine has a long tradition of excellence in public schooling. In particular, Maine spends more money per pupil and has a smaller average class size than the United States, at large, which has yielded positive results. Nowhere is Maine’s high standard of education more evident than in its five best school districts. 

Falmouth Public Schools is a small, high-performing school district of three schools in the coastal town of Falmouth. The district’s students benefit from a favorable student-to-teacher ratio of 11.5, which may explain why over 70% of students are proficient in math and RLA. 

Maine’s 2nd best school district is the Yarmouth School Department, a modestly sized district made up of one kindergarten, elementary school, middle school, and high school in the Portland suburb of Yarmouth. In 2019, Yarmouth High School was named a National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence. 

Coming in 3rd is MSAD #51, another small district of four schools headquartered in the affluent town of Cumberland. Students of the district excel in all areas, consistently scoring above state averages in assessment tests, and graduating at a rate of over 95%.

Cape Elizabeth School Department is the 4th best school system in the state of Maine. Like other exceptional school districts in the state, CESD is small, consisting of three schools with a total enrollment of around 1600. The district’s Cape Elizabeth High School has been named a Blue Ribbon School twice in the past fifteen years. 

Rounding out Maine’s top five is Scarborough Schools, another three-school district based in the coastal resort town of Scarborough. Students of the district excel in academics, participate enthusiastically in academics and extracurriculars, and pursue post-secondary graduation at a rate of 90%

Top School Districts in Maine, 2020

RankSchool DistrictCity
1Falmouth Public SchoolsFalmouth
2Yarmouth SchoolsYarmouth
3Rsu 51/Msad 51Cumberland
4Cape Elizabeth Public SchoolsCape Elizabeth
5Scarborough Public SchoolsScarborough
6Rsu 21Kennebunk
7York Public SchoolsYork
8Gorham Public SchoolsGorham
9Bangor Public SchoolsBangor
10Five Town CsdCamden
11Portland Public SchoolsPortland
12Rsu 05Freeport
13Wells-Ogunquit CsdWells
14Rsu 35/Msad 35Eliot
15South Portland Public SchoolsSouth Portland
16Brunswick Public SchoolsBrunswick
17Rsu 26Orono
18Rsu 14Windham
19Rsu 22Hampden
20Hermon Public SchoolsHermon
21Mt Desert CsdMount Desert
22Rsu 75/Msad 75Topsham
23Kittery Public SchoolsKittery
24Rsu 38Readfield
25Rsu 60/Msad 60North Berwick
26Rsu 55/Msad 55Hiram
27Rsu 15/Msad 15Gray
28Rsu 49/Msad 49Fairfield
29Rsu 70/Msad 70Hodgdon
30Rsu 58/Msad 58Phillips
31Rsu 57/Msad 57Waterboro
32Ellsworth Public SchoolsEllsworth
33Msad 27Fort Kent
34Winthrop Public SchoolsWinthrop
35Rsu 06/Msad 06Buxton
36Rsu 79/Msad 01Presque Isle
37Biddeford Public SchoolsBiddeford
38Rsu 18Oakland
39Rsu 52/Msad 52Turner
40East Millinocket Public SchoolsEast Millinocket
41Sanford Public SchoolsSanford
42Rsu 10Rumford
43Brewer Public SchoolsBrewer
44Rsu 25Bucksport
45Madawaska Public SchoolsMadawaska
46Rsu 11/Msad 11Gardiner
47Rsu 50Dyer Brook
48Rsu 13Rockland
49Rsu 01 - LkrsuBath
50Rsu 40/Msad 40Union
51Easton Public SchoolsEaston
52Rsu 09Farmington
53Rsu 39Caribou
54Rsu 29/Msad 29Houlton
55Rsu 16Poland
56Rsu 19Newport
57Rsu 67Lincoln
58Rsu 20Searsport
59Auburn Public SchoolsAuburn
60Rsu 02Hallowell
61Rsu 84/Msad 14Danforth
62Rsu 74/Msad 74North Anson
63Rsu 23Old Orchard Beach
64Rsu 44/Msad 44Bethel
65Rsu 86/Msad 20Fort Fairfield
66Boothbay-Boothbay Hbr CsdBoothbay Harbor
67Rsu 54/Msad 54Skowhegan
68Winslow SchoolsWinslow
69Rsu 17/Msad 17South Paris
70Waterville Public SchoolsWaterville
71Lewiston Public SchoolsLewiston
72Rsu 71Belfast
73Rsu 73Livermore Falls
74Rsu 37/Msad 37Harrington
75Moosabec CsdJonesport
76Rsu 03/Msad 03Unity
77Rsu 78Rangeley
78Augusta Public SchoolsAugusta
79Westbrook Public SchoolsWestbrook
80Msad 46Dexter
81Millinocket Public SchoolsMillinocket
82Rsu 24Sullivan
83Calais Public SchoolsCalais
84Rsu 34Old Town
85Rsu 64/Msad 64East Corinth
86Rsu 31/Msad 31Lagrange
87Machias Public SchoolsMachias
88Greenville Public SchoolsGreenville
89Rsu 33/Msad 33Frenchville
90Rsu 61/Msad 61Bridgton
91Rsu 04Wales
92Rsu 59/Msad 59Madison
93Rsu 83/Msad 13Bingham
94Rsu 08/Msad 08Vinalhaven
95Rsu 80/Msad 04Guilford
96Baileyville Public SchoolsBaileyville
97Wiscasset Public SchoolsWiscasset
98Deer Isle-Stonington CsdDeer Isle
99Rsu 88/Msad 24Van Buren
100Rsu 45/Msad 45Washburn


The following variables contributed to the ranking: number of students (K-12), graduation rate, school funding per student, student to teacher ratio, percent of students scoring above proficient in standardized state Math test, percent of students scoring above proficient in standardized state Reading and Language test. Data from a total of 10,247 public school districts were used to compute a score for each school district. The following states were omitted due to lack of sufficient data: Hawaii, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Utah, and Virginia. Note that high schools in some states have their own independent districts.

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