Texas students show 'appalling' drop in math scores since pandemic, report says

Scores from the National Assessment of Education Progress, often called The Nation's Report Card, show students in every state, including Texas, is seeing historic levels of learning loss since the pandemic began.

Between 2019 and 2022, math scores fell by 7 points for 8th graders and 5 points for 4th graders.


In Texas, fourth grade math scores are at their lowest levels in 20 years.

No state or large urban district recorded any improvements in math.

READ MORE: US math scores drop to lowest levels ever recorded during pandemic, report says

The latest results show the biggest drop in math performance in 4th and 8th grades since the testing program started more than 30 years ago.

"Changing expectations is probably one of the worst things we can do for kids because we know these 8th graders in 4-5 years they're going to be in college, they are going to start being in the workforce, there's lots they need to do to be prepared. They need adults to step up to make sure they're going to be prepared for their next step," said Anne Wicks, the director of education and opportunity at the George W. Bush Institute.

39 percent of students were below the basic learning level in math.


Reading numbers remained low in Texas.

Texas was below average with 35 percent scoring below the basic level on the 2022 tests.

Only about 21 percent of Texas 8th grade readers are considered proficient.

White and Asian students continued to Black and Hispanic students, but losses were seen across the board.

"No child was really immune to this. We saw drops from advanced to proficient to basic and below. Every one of those bands we saw kids move in statistically significant ways down," said Wicks.


When compared to other states in the U.S. Texas ranked 33rd in 4th grade reading and 41st in 8th grade reading. The state ranked 14th in 4th grade math and 25th in 8th grade math. 

The exam administered by federal officials is considered more rigorous than many state tests.

It sampled nearly 450,000 students in more than 10,000 schools.