NAEP Reading Scores Out Today

By Catherine Gewertz — March 24, 2010 1 min read
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The newest 4th grade and 8th grade reading scores from the National Assessment of Educational Progress, or NAEP, are out. Well, they’re almost out. I’ve got the results, but I can’t tell you about them until 10 a.m. Eastern time. Check EdWeek’s website for my first story, and check back again later for an updated version that includes comments from the NAEP folks at this morning’s press conference, and from other experts. UPDATE: check the website for the new version of my story.

No doubt politicians and advocates of all stripes have their fingers poised over the keyboard, ready to fire off press releases spinning the results. I’ll do my best to keep you updated on that reaction as well in this space.

UPDATE: There isn’t exactly a torrent of fired-up reaction to the NAEP scores. I was obviously wrong when I anticipated waves of outrage about the lack of progress.

Your U.S. Secretary of Ed, Arne Duncan, came the closest with this statement. Neil McCluskey at the Cato Institute gets a tad hot under the collar here.

The Southern Regional Education Board notes the progress of a number of Southern states, and EdWeek blogger Richard Whitmire, who has drawn national attention to the lagging performance of boys in school, notes the continued gender gaps on the most recent NAEP (though he doesn’t mention, as Brookings Institution scholar Tom Loveless points out in my story, that boys are actually improving faster than girls on the 8th grade reading NAEP).

The Washington Post reports the scores as an epitaph on No Child Left Behind, and The New York Times weighs in with its take, as well.

In my book, the award for most amusing comment on NAEP goes to guest blogger Matthew Ladner on edu-writer Jay P. Greene’s blog, talking about Florida’s upward trajectory on the NAEP. I’m not going to spoil it; you just have to go to the blog and read it, complete with the photo of that famous scene from “When Harry Met Sally.”

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A version of this news article first appeared in the Curriculum Matters blog.