Arizona students’ results on the National Assessment of Educational Progress remained stable in 2015, while scores declined nationally.
Students have taken the NAEP since 1969 to show what they have learned and can do in math, reading, science and writing. A sample of schools and students are selected to participate in each state. As part of No Child Left Behind, fourth- and eighth-graders take the reading and math assessments at least once every two years.
Among the bright spots for Arizona students highlighted in The Nation’s Report Card:
- Arizona eighth-graders’ average math scores on the 2015 NAEP of 283 are above the national average of 281, and their reading scores of 263 are near the national average of 264. That was not the case in 2013.
- Arizona fourth-graders’ reading scores of 215 maintained the progress seen in 2013.
Infographic by Lisa Irish/AZEdNews
Click here for a JPG of the infographic.
“It is a testament to the hard work of Arizona teachers and students that NAEP scores have remained stable given the many significant changes to our state’s education system in recent years,” said Diane Douglas, Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction, in a statement released Wednesday. “Our schools should absolutely be commended for the steadiness seen in these results.”
About a third of Arizona and U.S. students are proficient in reading and math, according to the 2015 NAEP results.
- 30 percent of Arizona fourth-graders performed at or above proficiency in reading on the NAEP, while 31 percent of Arizona eighth-graders did. Nationally, 36 percent of fourth-graders performed at or above proficiency in reading on the NAEP, while 34 percent of eighth-graders did.
- 35 percent of Arizona eighth-graders performed at or above proficiency in math, while 38 percent of Arizona fourth-graders did. Nationally, 32 percent of eighth-graders performed at or above proficiency in math, while 39 percent of fourth-graders did.
Video: NAEP 2015 Mathematics and Reading Results: An Overview for Grades 4 & 8
A significant achievement gap remained in 2015 between Arizona students of different races and ethnicities.
Arizona Demographic Breakdowns Average Scale Scores
|4th Grade Math||White||Hispanic||Native American||Black|
|8th Grade Math||White||Hispanic||Native American||Black|
|4th Grade Reading||White||Hispanic||Native American||Black|
|8th Grade Reading||White||Hispanic||Native American||Black|
Arizona students of all races showed gains in fourth- and eighth-grade reading and eighth-grade math.
Other factors that affect student achievement
Significantly more students nationwide who are eligible for free- or reduced-price lunch scored basic in math and reading on the NAEP, while students from families with higher incomes scored proficient.
Fifty-five percent of Arizona students qualified for free- or reduced-price lunch during the 2014-15 school year, and 25.6 percent of Arizona children live at or below the poverty rate.
English Language Learners nationwide also scored basic in math and reading on the NAEP, while students who were native English speakers scored proficient.