Progress? NAEP Says Nope but Data Suggest Possible Positives for CTE

Scores on the “Nation’s Report Card” continued to stagnate across the board, as this year’s results showed little change from the 2009 numbers in both mathematics and reading. However, an accompanying student survey further highlighted that students’ engagement in reading and math has an impact on their test scores.

On the survey, students who expressed interest in math or said they understood how it would help them in their future careers tended to post higher math scores on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). Similarly, students who reported discussing their reading every day or almost every day also had higher NAEP reading scores.

This correlation is a positive sign for CTE programs, which have proven effective in increasing student engagement and achievement rates.

Also within in this year’s NAEP results, the disaggregated data held even fewer positive signs. In fact, achievement gaps by race/ethnicity and gender remained unchanged since 2009. The largest of which is the gap between black and white students, with black students scoring 30 points below their white peers in reading and mathematics.

For the second time, the test’s results included a pilot program that delivered state-level disaggregated results for the 12th grade test. For a deeper dive into the results for the 13 participating states, check out this interactive infographic.

Andrea Zimmermann, State Policy Associate

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