New Mexico English Learners, Students With Disabilities Gain Ground

SANTA FE New Mexico students learning English and those with disabilities showed improvement in an otherwise flat report card issued Wednesday by the U.S. Department of Education.
The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), known as the nation’s report card, was based on tests administered between January and March. Overall, New Mexico’s 2019 data show little variation from the previous NAEP assessment data from 2017.
2019 results show that:
  • 24 percent of 4th graders scored proficient or above in reading
  • 24 percent of 8th graders scored proficient or above in reading
  • 29 percent of 4th graders scored proficient or above in math
  • 21 percent of 8th graders scored proficient or above in math
Public Education Secretary Ryan Stewart said low achievement rates over time reinforce the need for new investment in education and policies that support teachers – changes that are being implemented by Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham and her administration.
“We know New Mexico educators are working hard for our students,” Stewart said. “We have made unprecedented investments in our educators and in our academic programs.  These investments are making a difference that will accelerate student’s academic achievement and social and emotional well-being.”
New Mexico showed significant gains from 2017 in average scores for English Learners (EL) and Students with Disabilities (SD) in some grades and subject areas:
  • Grade 4 EL average math scores increased by 12 points
  • Grade 4 EL average reading scored increased by 17 points
  • Grade 4 SD average reading score increased by 5 points
The assessment measures what children in 4th and 8th grades know and can do in mathematics and reading across all states and jurisdictions. The test is administered every two years. This year, between January and March, approximately 11,000 of New Mexico’s 4th and 8th grade students participated in the NAEP assessment.
NAEP is a congressionally mandated project of the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), located within the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences. NAEP data are also used in special studies conducted by NCES. These have included comparisons of proficiency standards across state assessments; insights from high school transcripts, including courses taken and credits earned; and in-depth looks at how different demographic groups perform across different types of schools.