Michigan students sliding fast toward the bottom
Michigan, already sliding toward the bottom nationally for fourth-grade reading performance on a rigorous national exam, is projected to fall to 48th place by 2030 if the state does nothing to improve education.
That finding is included in a report out today from Education Trust-Midwest, a nonpartisan education research and policy organization based in Royal Oak. The organization analyzed more than a decade's worth of results from the National Assessment of Educational Progress — or NAEP, a tough exam given to a representative sample of students in each state.
In 2003, Michigan ranked 28th in fourth-grade reading. In 2015, the state was ranked 41st.
"We're certainly not on track to become a top 10 state any time soon," said Amber Arellano, executive director of the organization. "It's totally unacceptable for the economy, for business and especially for kids themselves."
Among the 2015 NAEP results highlighted in the report:
• Michigan ranked 41st in fourth-grade reading, down from 28th in 2003.
• The state ranked 42nd in fourth-grade math, down from 27 in 2003.
• It ranked 31st in eighth-grade reading, down from 27th in 2003.
• It ranked 38th in eight-grade math, down from 34th.
The report is focused on the fourth-grade reading results because of how crucial it is for students to be able to read well by the end of third grade. But students have also struggled in math.
The achievement problem crosses demographic lines. Consider how various demographic groups in Michigan compared with similar demographic groups Michigan students sliding fast toward the bottom: