National Testing for 4th, 8th Graders Delayed

National reading and math tests used to track what American students know in those subjects are being postponed from next year to 2022. The National Center for Education Statistics says concerns about whether testing would be feasible or produce valid results during the coronavirus pandemic forced the postponement.

The biennial National Assessment of Educational Progress evaluations used for the Nation’s Report Card were slated early next year for hundreds of thousands of the country’s fourth and eighth graders. But widespread remote learning and health protocols would have added big complications and costs because the model uses shared equipment and sends outside proctors to conduct the testing in schools.

Pushing ahead with testing in 2021 runs the risk of spending tens of millions of dollars and still not getting the data necessary to produce a reliable picture of state and national student performance.