🏫 Across the Board, Scores Drop in Math and Reading for U.S. Students


Across the Board, Scores Drop in Math and Reading for U.S. Students

MATH AND READING SCORES for fourth- and eighth-graders in the United States dropped since 2017, and the decrease in reading achievement has government researchers particularly concerned.

“Over the past decade, there has been no progress in either mathematics or reading performance, and the lowest performing students are doing worse,” Peggy Carr, associate commissioner of the National Center for Education Statistics, said during a press call Tuesday.

The 2019 National Assessment of Education Progress, also called NAEP or the Nation’s Report Card, was administered to more than 600,000 students enrolled in public schools and Catholic schools from every state and Washington, D.C., and also includes a break-out of student achievement in 27 large urban school districts.

Most notable were the score drops in reading, which occurred in 17 states with regard to fourth grade reading scores and in 31 states for eighth grade reading scores. On average, reading scores declined for fourth graders by 1 point and for eighth graders by 3 points compared to 2017.

“A 3-point decline for the country is substantial in as much as 31 states are driving it, large states, small states – and it’s a very meaningful decline,” Carr said.

The declines in reading at both grades were also seen at all levels of achievement, whether students were high- or low-achieving, with the exception of the highest achieving fourth graders.

“Over the long term in reading, the lowest performing students – those readers who struggle the most – have made no progress from the first NAEP administration almost 30 years ago,” she said.


Hate to read that. Wish our public schools would make reforms to improve how they teach students.


This is but one of many reasons that Catholic families need to put their kids in Catholic school or else homeschooling.

Another reason is that many Catholic schools are in danger of closing from low enrollment. Once COVID is over, they will desperately need to increase their enrollments, or else they may close.

Parents should vet the remaining Catholic schools for fidelity to the Magisterium, and then make whatever sacrifices needed to send their kids there. ESA and 529 accounts can now be used to pay for K-12 tuition which should improve the affordability factor if you plan ahead and invest early in funds that target the enrollment date for your student.

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Not that this has any relationship with the reported scores, but there is a lot of home schooling going on now. Given the financial and career sacrifices that I hear of people making now to school their kids at home, I feel like it might not become a widely popular option.

Agreed, which makes supporting Catholic schools even more important.

I wonder what the reading and math scores of the teachers are nowadays. In the (very) old days, when my mother taught in elementary school, she had to take a rather difficult exam which included reading comprehension, grammar, and math, plus essay writing, to get her NYC teacher’s license and become a public school teacher. No such thing now AFAIK. I bet many current teachers would not pass unless they lowered the passing grade.


You have to have a certain level in all of these or you can’t teach in the UK, if you are below the standard for any of them that’s it, you either up your skills or they don’t let you teach.


There are Praxis exams teachers have to take.

That’s good to know.

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