Dept. of Education: Students slighty better at reading, mixed results in math

The Department of Education released its latest test scores today. Math scores declined overall -- but that’s likely because young students are facing a harder test.
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The Department of Education released its latest test scores today. Math scores declined overall -- but that’s likely because young students are facing a harder test.

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New data shows little change in Minnesota student test scores

Data released by the Minnesota Department of Education Wednesday revealed that reading and test scores among students in the state have remained relatively flat over previous years. Also, while the scores showed a wide achievement gap between white students and students of color, state officials are hoping a change in how testing data is evaluated will help them fix the persistent disparity.

Many Minn. students fail math grad exam – but still graduate

Thousands of freshly minted Minnesota high school graduates wouldn't have gotten a diploma this year without a waiver from the state because they repeatedly failed Minnesota's math requirement. In some districts, as many as one-third of seniors wouldn't have graduated because they didn't pass the mathematics graduation test.

Minnesota students still above average, but others are gaining

The latest numbers show Minnesota students gaining in math and holding steady in reading. But Minnesota education officials say other states are making bigger strides. “We are still ahead of the curve, but that won’t be the case for long if other states continue to gain ground while we simply hold steady," says education commissioner Brenda Cassellius.

Urban students about the same as suburban counterparts on test scores

Parents often perceive suburban schools as the type of solid educational environment that delivers on measurements like standardized tests. But a Pioneer Press analysis reveals city and suburban schools are really about even if you use similar economic measures. Urban middle and upper incomes students score just as well as those in outlying suburbs.

Minnesota college students taking out more and bigger loans

The Office of Higher Education reports Minnesota students are taking out more loans and going deeper into debt. Overall borrowing was up ten percent in two years. Some of that is due to an increase in students but the office's director says it may also reflect more financial need amid the sluggish economy.