Gaps of the Day: 2013 National Assessment of Education Progress update


Before moving on to cover a broader range of equity gaps in Minnesota, here’s one last education-related gaps post. The 2013 National Assessment of Education Progress results are available, which allows us to have a more current perspective on Minnesota’s test score gaps.

Don’t worry, I’m not going to pile this post full of all the graphs. There will be a table summarizing Minnesota’s standing in all of the categories I examined in the previous NAEP gap posts. First, though, two different graphs presenting some of this data with more statistical detail, per the request of Dr. Lyelle Palmer in the comments section of a previous post.

Here’s the 2013 eighth grade math gaps for white and black students with 95% confidence intervals added:

(Data from NAEP)

And here’s the same set of students, but this time displaying median student scores (instead of mean scores) and the interquartile range between the 25th and 75th percentiles:

(Data from NAEP)

Finally, here’s the table summarizing where Minnesota stands on racial/ethnic gaps and income gaps, plus an indication of how many states are statistically significantly different from us.

(Data from NAEP)

Minnesota is showing some signs of progress, especially in the early grades, but we still have some significant equity gaps. Furthermore, as I’ve noted in the past posts in this series, our focus on closing those gaps shouldn’t depend on how we’re doing relative to other states. And, of course, changes in our test scores don’t mean much if we can’t get a handle on the graduation gaps that have a much more direct impact on students’ lives.