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2010 Spotlight

High-Poverty Public Schools

Reading

On each NAEP assessment given between 1998 and 2009, average reading scores for 4th- and 8th-grade students from high-poverty schools were lower than the scores for students from low-poverty schools (see tables A-10-1 and A-10-2). In 2009, the average NAEP reading score (on a 0–500 point scale) for 4th-grade students from high-poverty schools was 202, while the average score for 4th-graders from low-poverty schools was 237. The average score for 4th-graders from high-poverty schools increased between 1998 and 2009, from 187 to 202, while the score for 4th-graders from low-poverty schools increased from 231 to 237. The reading achievement gap between low- and high-poverty 4th-grade students decreased from 44 points in 1998 to 35 points in 2009. The percentages of 4th-grade students from high-poverty schools performing at or above the Basic, at or above the Proficient, and at the Advanced reading achievement levels were lower than the respective percentages of students from low-poverty schools (see table A-10-3). In 2009, about 45 percent of 4th-graders from high-poverty schools performed at or above Basic, compared with 83 percent of 4th-graders from low-poverty schools. Similarly, 14 percent of 4th-graders from high-poverty schools performed at or above Proficient, compared to 50 percent of 4th-graders at low-poverty schools.

In 2009, the average NAEP reading score (on a 0–500 point scale) for 8th-grade students from high-poverty schools was 243, while the average for 8th-graders from low-poverty schools was 277. Between 1998 and 2009, scores for 8th-graders from low-poverty schools increased 4 points, from 273 to 277, while there was no measurable change in the scores of 8th-graders from high-poverty schools. The reading achievement gap between low- and high-poverty 8th-grade students was 34 points in 2009. The percentages of 8th-grade students from high-poverty schools performing at or above the Basic, at or above the Proficient, and at the Advanced achievement levels were lower than the respective percentages of 8th-grade students from low-poverty schools. In 2009, about 53 percent of 8th-graders from high-poverty schools performed at or above Basic, compared with 87 percent of 8th-graders from low-poverty schools. Similarly, 12 percent of 8th-graders at high-poverty schools scored at or above Proficient, compared with 47 percent of 8th-graders at low-poverty schools.

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National Center for Education Statistics - http://nces.ed.gov
U.S. Department of Education