The pandemic sent parents and students home ….
After a while work and school went on line…
Some parents are STILL home….
The kids have gone back…
They have a LOT of ground to make up….
It’s no surprise that children are behind. The pandemic upended every facet of life and left millions learning from homefor months or more. The results released Monday reveal the depth of those setbacks, and the size of the challenge facing schools as they help students catch up.
Education Secretary Miguel Cardona said it’s a sign that schools need to redouble their efforts, using billions of dollars that Congress gave schools to help students recover.
“Let me be very clear: these results are not acceptable,” Cardona said.
The NAEP test is typically given every two years. It was taken between January and March by a sample of students in every state, along with 26 of the nation’s largest school districts. Scores had been stalling even before the pandemic, but the new results show decreases on a scale not seen before.
In both math and reading, students scored lower than those tested in 2019. But while reading scores dipped, math scores plummeted by the largest margins in the history of the NAEP test, which began in 1969.
Math scores were worst among eighth graders, with 38% earning scores deemed “below basic” — a cutoff that measures, for example, whether students can find the third angle of a triangle if they’re given the other two. That’s worse than 2019, when 31% of eighth graders scored below that level.
No part of the country was exempt. Every region saw test scores slide, and every state saw declines in at least one subject.
Several major districts saw test scores fall by more than 10 points. Cleveland saw the largest single drop, falling 16 points in fourth-grade reading, along with a 15-point decline in fourth-grade math. Baltimore and Tennessee’s Shelby County also saw precipitous declines….
Most concerning, however, are the gaps between students.
Confirming what many had feared, racial inequities appear to have widened during the pandemic. In fourth grade, Black and Hispanic students saw bigger decreases than white students, widening gaps that have persisted for decades.
Inequities were also reflected in a growing gap between higher and lower performing students. In math and reading, scores fell most sharply among the lowest performing students, creating a widening chasm between struggling students and the rest of their peers…