Minnesota above average on 'Nation's Report Card,' but gaps remain

Minnesota students scored above the national average on a test known as the "Nation's Report Card," according to 2017 results out Tuesday.

The National Assessment of Educational Progress evaluates students in grades 4, 8 and 12 on a variety of subjects, although not all subjects and grades are tested every year.

Minnesota students' scores did not change significantly from 2015 when math and reading tests were last given. Thirty-nine percent of Minnesota students scored proficient in reading in 2017. That rate is identical to 2015 fourth-grade reading proficiency and one percentage point lower than 2015 proficiency for eighth-graders.

In math, 53 percent of Minnesota fourth-graders and 46 percent of eighth-graders scored proficient. Those rates are unchanged from 2015 for fourth-graders and 2 percentage points lower for eighth-graders.

Score gaps between students of color and white students are bigger in Minnesota than in the U.S. overall for most racial groups. Minnesota's white students scored higher than other racial groups in nearly all subjects and grade levels, with the largest gaps between white and black students.

Average scores in reading and math for white Minnesota students were more than 20 points higher than for black and Hispanic students. Asian and Pacific Islander students and multiracial students showed smaller gaps. Average reading and math scores on the National Assessment of Educational Progress are reported on a 0-500 scale.

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