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Hawaii students' reading scores improve as nation's stagnate

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Massachusetts students top national math and reading exams

"When you plot out the data for the last decade or so, you see Virginia fourth-graders consistently performing well above the national average in reading and mathematics and a long-term trend of ever-higher achievement in both subjects", Acting Superintendent of Public Instruction Steven Constantino said.

"The Nation's Report Card provides us with the very best data we have to understand how our students stack up against those in other states", said Michelle Richard, an education researcher and vice president of Public Sector Consultants, a Lansing-based public policy firm.

"We will be working closely with our local school districts and charter schools to ensure every student has the knowledge and skills needed to ensure they have choices about their future", Dickson said. The national average was 267. In contrast, in 2007, Tennessee received an "F" in Truth in Advertising from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce because results on the state exam were often remarkably different than what NAEP showed as students' true understanding of the content. The average scores for most states did not change compared to 2015 in either grade or subject. Low-performing students did worse in math and reading, while higher-performing students stayed at the same level. Performance on state reading exams has also been virtually flat.

"This year we have focused on rebuilding the district's infrastructure using the same strategies that led to some of the highest performance among large urban school districts in Duval, Miami-Dade, and Florida in general", he said. "When it comes to math, we are like the nation".

Math scores continue to be a concern for West Virginia students.

The Detroit eighth-graders who took the test in 2017, meanwhile, posted similar scores to students who took the test two years earlier, with math scores up 1 point and reading scores down 2 points - changes that were not identified as significant.

According to eighth-grade reading results, students from low-income households had an average score 20 points lower than students not eligible for free or reduced-price school lunch.

But in math, the numbers moved in the opposite direction.

Rhode Island ranked below the national average on eighth-grade math and higher than the nation on fourth-grade reading.

The assessment also reports results in terms of an average scale score from a scale of 500, which can be used to compare a state's performance over time.

How could the state start improving math scores?

"I hope they'll see (the results) as a call to action", he said. "Teachers have the funds and support they need to make sure curriculum is aligned to assessments and the standards".

Of course, the NAEP has its limitations.

In reading, 39 percent of students statewide are at or above proficiency compared to 35 percent nationally.

Those differences were apparent in Connecticut's achievement gaps, among the largest in the nation.

In reading, 35 percent of fourth-graders nationally and 31 percent in Arkansas scored at proficient or better.

The disparities were even wider by race than income.

For instance, just over half of North Carolina's white and nonpoor students earned proficient ratings in fourth-grade reading.

Note in the green section of the table that the change in proficiency rates on NAEP and KPREP match about as closely as possible for Grade 4 reading. "Where top-performing states are seeing real gains over the last fourteen years, MI has remained relatively flat".

The major bright spot was eighth grade math, where Cleveland had the third-highest increase among cities. Tennessee made historic progress in 2013 on NAEP, becoming the fastest improving state in the country, and those scores have been largely stable through the 2015 and 2017 cycles.

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