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Nation’s Report Card Shows Mixed Results For Texas

This chart shows Texas performance on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) over the past five tests. Hold your mouse over the bars to see the testing years and specific values. 

Texas public schools have shown few gains in how well they teach reading, but schools are making significant progress in math, according to one of the largest and most important nationwide assessments in the United States. African American and Hispanic students in Texas are also outperforming many of their counterparts in other states.

The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) – often referred to as the Nation’s Report Card – tests a sampling of fourth and eighth graders across the country every two years.

In Texas, there was almost no change from last year in fourth and eighth grade reading scores. Same for fourth grade math scores.

But when it comes to eighth grade math scores, Texas students have been showing steady gains over the last five tests, as you can see in the graphic above.

Texas education commissioner Robert Scott acknowledges low test scores in math, noting that the state introduced new curriculum guidelines two years ago and only began providing new instructional materials last year.

“The new State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR test) also significantly ramps up expectations for this area. I am optimistic that these efforts combined will begin to produce improved results soon," Scott said in a news release.

The Texas Education Agency was also quick to point out the successes of Hispanic and African American students on the tests. In eighth grade math, for example, African-American and Hispanic students placed second nationwide. White students scored fourth

Check out the TEA’s statement on the results here. The National Center for Educational Statistics had made reports on math scores and reading scoresavailable online.  

Nathan Bernier is the transportation reporter at KUT. He covers the big projects that are reshaping how we get around Austin, like the I-35 overhaul, the airport's rapid growth and the multibillion-dollar transit expansion Project Connect. He also focuses on the daily changes that affect how we walk, bike and drive around the city. Got a tip? Email him at Follow him on X @KUTnathan.