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News Release - NAEP provides snapshot of student performance, shows Colorado reflecting national trends in reading and math

Oct. 28. 2015

NAEP provides snapshot of student performance, shows Colorado reflecting national trends in reading and math

According to the latest results from the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), also known as The Nation’s Report Card, Colorado has more students who are proficient or above in math than most other states.  In reading, the percent of Colorado students who scored at proficient or above was about the same as students in other states.  The one-hour tests in reading and math were each taken by 2,200 fourth-grade students and 2,300 eighth-grade students last spring.

Although the 2015 test results showed stable results or small declines compared to 2013, long term trends show significant gains in both reading and math by Colorado students.  

On average, Colorado’s fourth- and eighth-graders held steady in their performance in reading. In math, Colorado is one of eight states (DE, KS, ME, MD, ND, RI, VT) where both fourth- and eighth-grade scores were slightly lower than 2013 scores, although they still outperformed most of the nation. 

Colorado Reading Highlights
Although reading scores are mostly unchanged since 2013, the long-term trend continues to show significant gains for Colorado students. 

Grade Four
•    The 2015 Colorado grade four average scale score in reading (224) is not significantly different than the 2013 score (221) but has risen by a statistically significant 7 points since the 1992 test (217). 

•    Colorado is one of 37 states/jurisdictions, including the grade four national average reading score for public schools, whose grade four average reading score remained flat when compared to the 2013 test.

•    In 2015, 39 percent of Colorado grade four students performed at or above the NAEP Proficient level in reading.  This is not significantly different than the 36 percent of the nation’s public school grade four students who performed at the same level.

•    Sixteen states scored significantly lower than Colorado in grade four average reading score, 28 states were not significantly different than Colorado, and seven states (MA, DoDEA, NH, VT, NJ, CT, WY) outperformed Colorado .

Grade Eight
•    The 2015 Colorado grade eight average scale score in reading (268) is not significantly different than the 2013 score (271) but has risen by a statistically significant four points since the 1998 test (264).

•    Colorado is one of 43 states/jurisdictions whose grade eight average reading score remained flat when compared to the 2013 test. The grade eight national average reading score for public schools decreased since 2013. 

•    In 2015, 38 percent of Colorado grade eight students performed at or above the NAEP Proficient level in reading.  This is not significantly different than the 33 percent of the nation’s public school grade eight students who performed at the same level.

•    Twenty states scored significantly lower than Colorado in grade eight average reading score, 26 states were not significantly different than Colorado, and five states (DoDEA, NH, MA, VT, CT) outperformed Colorado.

Colorado Math Highlights
Although math scores dipped slightly in 2015, more Colorado students are at or above the Proficient level than students in other states.  The long term trend shows significant gains by Colorado students since 1992. 

Grade Four
•    The 2015 Colorado grade four average scale score in math (242) is lower than the 2013 score (247) but has risen by a statistically significant 21 points since the 1992 test (221). 

•    In 2015, 43 percent of Colorado grade four students performed at or above the NAEP Proficient level in math. This is significantly higher than the 39 percent of the nation’s public school grade four students who performed at the same level.

•    Twenty states scored significantly lower than Colorado in grade four average math score, 22 states were not significantly different than Colorado and nine states (MA, MN, NH, IN, DoDEA, WY, A, NJ, ND) outperformed Colorado .

Grade Eight
•    The 2015 Colorado grade eight average scale score in math (286) is lower than the 2013 score (290) but has risen by a statistically significant 14 points since the 1992 test (272).

•    In 2015, 37 percent of Colorado grade eight students performed at or above the NAEP Proficient level in math. This is significantly higher than the 32 percent of the nation’s public school grade eight students who performed at the same level.

•    Twenty-two states scored significantly lower than Colorado in grade eight average math score, 23 states were not significantly different than Colorado and six states (MA, NH, MN, NJ, DoDEA, VT) outperformed Colorado.

Additional Colorado highlights, including trend results by subgroup, can be found at http://www.cde.state.co.us/assessment/CoNAEP

Background
Since 1969, the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) under the U.S. Department of Education has administered the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) tests.  NAEP provides national and state achievement results of elementary and secondary students in the U.S. in eight subject areas, including math, reading, writing and science.  Based on a representative sample of students at the state and national level selected to participate, NAEP produces state results for grades four and eight in math and reading every two years.  The assessments are not designed to produce individual district, school, or student data, but can be used to provide a point of reference for comparisons between states and to provide a representative picture of average student performance over time.  States are neither rewarded nor sanctioned based on their results.

For the 2015 test, 297,000 fourth-grade students in 7,230 public schools and 273,000 eight-grade students in 5,670 public schools nationwide participated in the math and reading tests. In Colorado, 2,200 fourth-grade students in 98 public schools and 2,300 eighth-grade students in 94 public schools participated in the math and reading tests.  2015 was the last year of paper-pencil administration of the NAEP assessments. Starting in 2017 all NAEP reading, math and writing assessments will be digitally-based.
  
The Nation’s Report Card: Math and Reading 2015 are available at http://www.nationsreportcard.gov/reading_math_2015/

 

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