Education think tanks and reformers have been abuzz today with the release of NAEP (National Assessment of Educational Progress) scores — also known as “The Nation’s Report Card.” The biennial release charts student achievement in math and English in fourth and eighth grades. (For an explainer on all things NAEP, go here.) The 2011 stats showed slight improvement in math across both levels, but reading scores among fourth-graders remained stagnant.
NAEP provides us the data, but officials do not surmise causes or reasons for growth – or lack thereof. That’s why we have eduwonks. Here’s what they had to say (in no particular order):
Mike Petrilli at the Fordham Institute wonders whether Reading First could be attributed for some of the gains seen in reading since the program’s implementation in 2004.
Education Trust released a statement, drawing attention to achievement gaps, which have not shown enough progress. They also used the opportunity to push for some provisions not currently included in the Harkin-Enzi ESEA reauthorization.
The Hechinger Report points out that while NAEP reports gains across all income levels, it’s important to remember that stats on poverty are likely not accurate because that information is self-reported.
Dana Goldstein calls for more rigorous standards and activities in reading to improve stagnant scores.
Kevin Carey of Education Sector says improving student achievement is “like climbing a mountain, where every increase in elevation is hard-won and the task gets more arduous the higher you go.”
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