Yesterday, 2022 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) results were released, confirming that learning loss for American children during the pandemic has been significant and widespread.
The results find only 36% of fourth graders and 26% of eighth graders are proficient in math – representing the largest decline in math scores since NAEP began testing in 1990. Reading scores are also down, with only 33% of fourth graders and 31% of eighth graders reaching proficiency.
CSF President Darla Romfo, speaking with David Asman on The Evening Edit last night, identified one bright spot in the NAEP results: Catholic school students exceeded their pre-pandemic scores in two of the four categories, and scored higher than public and charter school students in all four categories. Darla pointed to educational choice as a reason for this success:
“Tucked into that report, there’s a little nugget that says fourth graders in math and eighth graders in reading had no loss of learning in the parochial schools and overall did much better. Now, there might be a couple of reasons for that. One is that they opened up mostly for full in-person learning in the fall of 2022. But I think there’s another reason for it, and that’s because these schools are schools of choice. Parents have decided that these schools are the best fit for their child, and it would make sense that their children would learn better in those schools.“
Watch the full interview here.