Rural 3rd graders’ reading levels are falling short of their urban and suburban peers’ reading levels, according to a brief released this month by the Carsey Institute at the University of New Hampshire.
The average reading score of a 3rd grade rural student was 122 on a 212-point scale, which was nearly 8 points lower than the score of an average suburban student. Urban students’ scores were 6 points lower than the suburban average.
The brief drew on data from the federal Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, which tracked children from 1998 to 2006.
“Although these differences are not large, even small differences in third grade reading achievement can have important effects on later educational outcomes,” the brief states.
A version of this article appeared in the May 25, 2011 edition of Education Week as Rural Students