A new report on elementary students’ reading proficiency finds that 80 percent of students from lower-income families aren’t reading proficiently by the time they reach 4th grade.
The “data snapshot” released last week by the Baltimore-based Annie E. Casey Foundation, which has long studied reading prowess as a key measure of children’s well-being, also finds that two-thirds of all students, regardless of income, are not reading proficiently by 4th grade. The report is based on data from the 2013 and 2003 administrations of the National Assessment of Educational Progress.
It finds that children from higher-income families have improved their reading skills more in the past decade than have their lower-income peers. Eighty-three percent of black children, and 81 percent of Latino children, are not reading at a NAEP level of proficiency by 4th grade, compared with 55 percent of white children and 49 percent of Asian children.
A version of this article appeared in the February 05, 2014 edition of Education Week as Learning to Read