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DOE: 8th Graders Progress in Reading Stands Out in 2017 ‘Nation’s Report Card’

Hawai`i is one of only ten states to show an increase in grade 8 reading scores in 2017, with an increase of four scaled score points, according to the Hawai`i State Department of Education based on results from the National Assessment of Educational Progress.

NAEP released its 2017 results in “The Nation’s Report Card.”

State reading scaled scores in grade 4 (+1) and mathematics scaled scores in grade 4 (no change) and grade 8 (-2) showed no significant change since 2015 test scores.  

“The uptick we’re seeing in reading scores among our eighth graders is encouraging.  The percentage of students ranked ‘at or above proficient’ in reading shows continued improvement over time,” said Superintendent Christina Kishimoto.  “Being one of only ten states to show solid progress in eighth grade reading in 2017, our students’ improvements over the last twelve years continues to be some of the highest in the nation and reflects the hard work of our students and teachers.”

The DOE is taking a close look at the 2017 results, alongside other student data. The NAEP assessment was originally designed to provide a common measure of student performance across the country at a time when there was no consistency among state academic standards or common measures to compare states. This includes college and career readiness standards adopted by states, including Hawaii, in the last decade.

Superintendent Kishimoto added, “Our commitment to equitable access to quality education for all students continues to drive our focus on excellence in the Hawaii Public School System.”

NAEP results are reported in four achievement levels: Below Basic, Basic, Proficient and Advanced.  The proportion of grade 8 students who were Proficient in reading increased in 2017, with no significant changes in grade 4 reading and grades 4 and 8 math.  From 2013 to 2015, Hawaii followed a national drop in test results.  Hawaii’s percentage of students scoring Proficient in reading and math has increased steadily over the last decade.  Hawaii’s students’ average scores have also increased significantly over time.

Percent of Students “Proficient” on NAEP, Hawaii results since 2005:

 
2017
2015
2013
2011
2009
2007
2005
Math, Grade 4
38
38
46
40
37
33
27
Math, Grade 8
27
30
32
30
25
21
18
Reading, Grade 4
32
29
30
27
26
26
23
Reading, Grade 8
30
26
28
26
22
20
18

“We are very proud of the progress in our reading scores. We also need to strengthen our math performance and close the gap with national scores,” said Assistant Superintendent Rodney Luke, Office of Strategy, Innovation, and Performance.  “Math scores are often correlated to college and career readiness and we want our younger students to continue the momentum of our Advanced Placement and dual credit programs when they reach high school.  Improving reading and math scores will demand strategic planning, thinking and action and we know our students will be up to the task.”

NAEP is the largest nationally representative and continuing assessment of what America’s students know and can do in various subject areas. Assessments are conducted periodically in mathematics, reading, science, the arts, civics, economics, geography, U.S. history, and in technology and engineering literacy.  In 2017, NAEP began administering digitally based assessments for mathematics, reading and writing.

Since NAEP assessments are administered uniformly using the same sets of tests across the nation, NAEP results serve as a common metric for all states and selected urban districts.  The assessment stays essentially the same from year to year, with only carefully documented changes.  This permits NAEP to provide a clear picture of student academic progress over time.

2,300 grade 4 students and 2,200 grade 8 students represented Hawai`i in the 2017 NAEP math exam, along with 2,300 grade 4 students and 2,200 grade 8 students in the reading exam.  

The report in full can be read here

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