Student Test Scores Improve

TAMPA -

Reading scores are up and so are the math scores for Florida students according to a national report released Tuesday. Florida's fourth graders continued to score above the national average in both subjects. The state's eighth-graders, though, remained below the national average in both, but they are closing the gap.

The National Assessment of Education Progress or NAEP for short is also known as the nation's report card. It compares standardized test scores in reading and math from all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

The new results show Florida's fourth graders moved from a ranking of 28th to 18th in the nation in reading in just two years. Eighth grade readers jumped from 41st to 32nd in national ranking.

Florida Education Commissioner Jeanine Blomberg said, 'As these results show, Floridas educational reform efforts have placed our state on a path to national distinction.'

Blomberg added that Florida is one of only four states to have made significant improvements in closing the achievement gap among students of color. 'Hispanic students continue to out perform national students in reading and math.'

Hispanic fourth graders rank second in the nation in both reading and math scores.

Critics have said reforms enacted by former Governor Jeb Bush placed too much emphasis on test taking.

The Nation's Report Card is complied by the U.S. Department of Education.

To access the National Assessment of Educational Progress 2007 scores on the Florida Department of Education web site, click here.

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