Montana test scores improve, still lower than pre-pandemic levels

National Report Card shows falling scores within MT schools post-pandemic
Elsie Arntzen
Posted at 5:56 PM, Oct 26, 2022
and last updated 2022-10-26 19:56:52-04

The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), also known as the National Report Card scores were released on Monday. The NAEP measures math and reading knowledge among students in 4th and 8th grade.

The 4th-grade math score was 239 which is higher than the national average of 235, but lower than the pre-pandemic score of 241. The 8th-grade math score was 277 which is also higher than the national average of 273, but still falls short of the pre-pandemic score of 284.

The reading scores for both 4th and 8th grade follow the same trend with scores ranging between 219 and 261. Both of these scores are lower than the previous 2019 scores. In response to these falling scores, Bozeman School District Superintendent Casey Bertram, says "Our response to these data are our Long Range Strategic Plan goals and action plans in each school that focus on addressing achievement gaps via multi-tiered systems of support (MTSS) and teacher collaboration," says Bertram.

State Superintendent Elsie Arntzen also responded to the falling test scores and believes that the NAEP does not reflect Montana student's education.

“As I have said before, a one-size-fits-all test does not accurately measure student knowledge,” said Superintendent Elsie Arntzen. “This is why I am focused on innovative solutions like the Montana Alternative Student Testing pilot program and math innovation zones. The consistent downward trend in assessment scores must be reversed and our student’s education must be put first," said Arntzen.