New York doesn’t look so hot in the just-released 2011 National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP) report cards in math and reading, designed to show “what America’s students know and can do in various subject areas.”

Generally, the trending shows improvements (both in New York and nationwide) between 1992 and 2007. However, while schools have held the line nationally since 2007, New York has been falling off. Examining the 2011 math report card, we found:

  • Twenty percent of fourth graders rank as below basic. That’s up from 15 percent in 2007, while nationally 18 percent are considered below basic, down from 19 percent in 2007;
  • Since 2007, New York saw a seven percent decline among fourth graders ranked as proficient, while the proficiency rate among fourth graders nationwide dropped only one percent, from 34 to 33; and
  • Among New York eighth graders, these rankings remained stagnant — 30 percent ranked below basic and 23 percent ranked proficient.  Nationally, eight graders gained ground in both categories, decreasing the percentage ranked below basic and increasing those ranked proficient.

The reading report card shows:

  • A general decline among eighth graders — 78 percent of NY students ranked as either basic, proficient or advanced in 1998, while 76 percent ranked in those categories in 2011. New York’s scores were better than average in this category, but the nation improved while our kids lost ground; and
  • Fourth graders improved their ratings in reading at the same rate as their national peers. Among those ranked as basic, proficient or advanced, New York fourth graders improved from 61 percent in 1998 to 68 percent in 2011; nationally students improved from 60 to 67 percent.

Find the full rankings at our Data Bank, under the education section.

About the Author

Tim Hoefer

Tim Hoefer is president & CEO of the Empire Center for Public Policy.

Read more by Tim Hoefer

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