While the COVID-19 pandemic has hurt student reading test scores in almost all other states, Hawaii was one of only two states where the reading scores for students grades 3 through 8 have stayed relatively stable, according to a new independent analysis called the Education Recovery Scorecard.

And even as math scores declined in all 50 states and Washington, D.C., between 2019 and this year, Hawaii had the fourth-smallest decrease, according to the data released today (Hawaii time) by the collaboration between the Center for Education Policy Research at Harvard University and the Educational Opportunity Project at Stanford University.

The Associated Press received exclusive advance access to the report, which the researchers call the largest and most detailed dataset yet available on the subject.

In the Education Recovery Scorecard, a grade-level equivalent score of “-1” translates into one grade-level lost between 2019 and 2022.

The average student in America lost the equivalent of nearly a quarter of a school year in reading, and lost more than half a school year in math. By comparison:

>> Reading: Hawaii was second best in the nation, with students’ reading scores rising between 2019 and this year by a grade-level equivalent of 0.10 , meaning one-tenth of a grade level.

>> Math: Hawaii’s decrease was the fourth smallest, at -0.325, meaning students’ math scores fell by about one-third of a grade level. Not a single state increased overall average math scores between 2019 and 2022.


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