Reading and math scores on a downward trend in Maryland, educators say its going to take teamwork to get scores back up

MARYLAND – A recent educational assessment is showing concerns for fourth and eighth-grade students.

Those worries come directly from the 2022 National Assessment of Educational Progress. Math and reading scores are not the best right now in the state of Maryland following a recent study by the Maryland State Department of Education. Educators tell 47 ABC the downward trend this year was expected due to the pandemic, however, in Worcester County amongst themselves they seem to be on the up and up.

“Our partnership between home and our classrooms is always critically important¬†being involved with students while they’re doing their homework, preparing for classroom tests, and daily reading,” says Cheryl Bost, President of the Maryland State Education Association.

This is after the National Assessment of Educational Progress revealed that Maryland student scores are on a downward trend heightened by the pandemic. “The pandemic really exacerbated some of the educational needs that our students have, so any time that we can provide additional tutoring is helpful,” says Bost.

Despite pandemic struggles the Worcester County School District was able to surpass these hurdles. “We were able to do our reopening plan and just the persistence and perseverance just to get more kids back quicker than most districts in Maryland last year and maintain some severance of normalcy,” says Dee Shorts, Chief Academic Officer for grades Pre-K through 8th in Worcester County School District.

Since they were able to open, they saw different testing results among their students. “I will say in Worcester County that’s not the data that we’re seeing, fortunately with our kids. In the spring we surely left on a high note as far as learning lost for our students,” says Shorts.

For next year, in order to keep test scores up educators say this will take the teamwork of parents and schools coming together. “We have to go back to teaching our students instead of to a test. When we teach our students and we truly see their challenges and their strengths, we can make them better and feel more successful than what we see in one snapshot of one test,” says Bost. “Being a strong reader and learning how to read in grades K to 3rd and then read to learn as we get older is the key to academic success,” says Shorts.

Educators tell me for parents it’s best to talk to their teachers and ask how they can help and support your child. Also, reading goes a long way they say all you need is 15 minutes a day. However, grant funding across the state has helped to make school resources more available to students. “The Blueprint For Maryland’s Future that will help invest and provide and expanding pre-k opportunities which really sets students up for success or provide tutorings, many of the supports that were long overdue,” says Bost.

To view the full NAEP assessment click here.

Categories: Check It Out, Education, Local News, Maryland