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Eighth-graders in nearly every state across the nation and fourth-graders in a large majority of states, including California, saw significant drops in average math scores since the pandemic, reflecting “heartbreaking” academic setbacks for students across wide swaths of the country, according to the results of the “nation’s report card” released Sunday.
Average reading scores also declined in a majority of states, though California did not see a significant drop.
The falling scores spanned the political and demographic makeup of states, making it difficult to draw simple conclusions about the role the length of pandemic-related campus closures played in student performance, officials said. Overall, scores in Los Angeles, while alarmingly low, showed signs of resilience compared with other large urban districts, and sagging or stalled California scores fared slightly better than national averages.
The standardized test scores are especially concerning given that before the pandemic experts were already sounding the alarm about high rates of students across the nation not meeting basic proficiency in reading and math.
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