Assessment Report Roundup

Test Scores in Big-City Schools Seen to Be on Upswing

By Lesli A. Maxwell — April 29, 2008 1 min read

“Beating the Odds: An Analysis of Student Performance and Achievement Gaps on State Assessments”

The nation’s urban students posted gains on their states’ reading and mathematics exams in 2007 to continue a trend of improving achievement in the largest public school districts, a report released last week concludes.

The report by the Council of the Great City Schools found that 63 percent of 4th grade students in big-city school districts scored at or above proficiency in math on state tests last year, an increase of 14 percentage points from 2003, when proficiency levels were at 49 percent. For 8th graders, math proficiency in 2007 reached 55 percent, up from 42 percent in 2003.

See Also

For more stories on this topic see Testing and Accountability.

In reading, gains were more modest, with 60 percent of 4th graders at or above proficiency in 2007, up from 51 percent in 2003. For 8th graders, 51 percent reached proficiency or higher in reading last year, an increase of 8 percentage points since 2003.

This is the eighth annual report on the progress of urban students from the council, a Washington-based advocacy group for 66 of the nation’s largest school districts. The study also includes data from urban districts where students participated in the National Assessment of Educational Progress, or NAEP, a series of exams generally considered to be more rigorous than state tests.

Though proficiency levels on the NAEP, also known as the “nation’s report card,” were not as strong as on state exams, urban students continued to show improvement in reading and math as well.

Related Tags:

A version of this article appeared in the April 30, 2008 edition of Education Week


Classroom Technology Webinar Making Big Technology Decisions: Advice for District Leaders, Principals, and Teachers
Educators at all levels make decisions that can have a huge impact on students. That’s especially true when it comes to the use of technology, which was activated like never before to help students learn
Professional Development Webinar Expand Digital Learning by Expanding Teacher Training
This discussion will examine how things have changed and offer guidance on smart, cost-effective ways to expand digital learning efforts and train teachers to maximize the use of new technologies for learning.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Student Well-Being Webinar
The Social-Emotional Impact of the Covid-19 Pandemic on American Schoolchildren
Hear new findings from an analysis of our 300 million student survey responses along with district leaders on new trends in student SEL.
Content provided by Panorama

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Assessment Standardized Tests Could Be in Jeopardy in Wake of Biden Decisions, Experts Say
Has the Biden administration shored up statewide tests this year only to risk undermining long-term public backing for them?
6 min read
Illustration of students in virus environment facing wave of test sheets.
Collage by Vanessa Solis/Education Week (Images: iStock/DigitalVision Vectors/Getty)
Assessment How Can Teachers Better Understand Students? A New Breed of Assessment Will Try to Help
Researchers will work to create formative assessments that can give teachers a window into students’ emerging identities and strengths
4 min read
In this Nov. 19, 2020, file photo, sixth-grade students listen to instruction in class at Cape Cod Lighthouse Charter School in East Harwich, Mass.
Researchers hope to create new assessments to help teachers gain deeper insights into the identities and strengths of their students, like these 6th graders at Cape Cod Lighthouse Charter School in East Harwich, Mass.
Elise Amendola/AP
Assessment Opinion It's Time We Begin Using Assessments to Look Forward, Instead of Back
Schools do not get much value from high-stakes tests. Many are now allowing schools to use better assessments to guide student learning.
Seth Feldman
5 min read
shutterstock 19525837
Assessment Opinion Grading Has Always Been an Imperfect Exercise. COVID-19 Made It Worse
It’s hard reducing the complexity of each student’s social, emotional, and academic learning to a letter grade. Maybe we’re doing it wrong.
Lory Walker Peroff
4 min read
A student's grades are unknown
Robert Neubecker for Education Week