Oklahoma's reading test scores decline

Friday, June 20th 2003, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

(Washington-AP) -- A government report says fourth-graders across the nation are showing they are better readers, while the skills of 12th-graders are declining.

At the same time, eighth-graders showed no improvement from four years ago. That's according to the National Assessment of Educational Progress.

In Oklahoma, reading scores for fourth-graders and eighth-graders declined.

Twenty-six percent of fourth-graders and 28 percent of eighth-graders scored at or above the proficient level on the reading test in 2002, down from 30 percent for both groups four years earlier.

Oklahoma Superintendent Sandy Garrett attributed the decline to a change in the makeup of the sample of test scores graded from the state. Garrett says the 2002 sample included more special education students, for example.

But she says officials aren't trying to make excuses and will continue to increase their efforts in reading and await other test scores.