COVID-19 Bumps NAEP Reading And Math Assessments To Next Year

Published: Wednesday, November 25, 2020 - 6:32pm
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The National Assessment of Educational Progress for fourth- and eighth-grade reading and math will be postponed until next year.

The move is a response to schools' struggles with the pandemic.

NAEP report cards compare student proficiencies across countries, states and some cities. They establish benchmarks, identify successes and detect possible problems.

Though she agrees with the decision, Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman said she wishes she could use NAEP tools to gauge the effects of current school disruptions.

"By not being able to have the NAEP test as one way to measure student success, it makes that question harder to answer," she said. "As we're looking over the years and trying to measure our progress and growth as a state, it creates a gap in terms of the time in which we will not be able to answer that question."

Hoffman does not yet know how the coronavirus will affect state or federal assessment tests. But she says she hopes evaluations will take into account the coronavirus's impact on schools.

"It's very important that any kind of state assessments that are given in the future should not be used in a way that are punitive for our teachers or for our schools."

One metric that Hoffman says concerns her is chronic absenteeism, which has been difficult to track amid the shifts between online and in-person education.

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