The Texas Education Agency published more end-of-year assessment scores, showing continued shortcomings in students’ grasp of mathematics and science.

The results for students in grades 3-8 on the Spring 2024 State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) exam were made public on Friday. Parents can view individual results for their children via their school’s family portal or here using the access code they were provided.

Reading-language arts (RLA) scores were more or less similar to last year’s STAAR results. While there was no change in the share of seventh-graders scoring at grade level (52%), slight drops were seen in grades 3 (46%), 5 (53%), and 8 (54%). Meanwhile, there were minor increases in grades 4 (49%) and 6 (54%).

The share of students meeting grade level appears to have increased slightly overall compared to 2019.

However, Texas middle schoolers’ social studies, science, and math performance lag behind pre-COVID-19 lockdown levels.

Grade 8 social science results were the same as last year, with 31% of students scoring at grade level, less than the 35% recorded in 2019.

Meanwhile, a significant drop was seen in grade 5 science, with 26% of students scoring at grade level compared to 34% last year and 47% in 2019. A smaller three-percentage point decrease was logged for grade 8 science, with 42% of students scoring at grade level this year compared to 45% last year. In 2019, 49% of eighth graders met grade level.

In math, decreases were seen across the board, with the exception of grade 6. Some 37% of students scored at grade level in 2023 and 2024. Grades 3 (40%), 7 (32%), and 8 (40%) saw the most significant year-over-year drops — a four-percentage point decrease for grade 8 and a three-percentage point decrease for grades 3 and 7.

More dips were recorded in math scores for grades 4 and 6, with 44% of students achieving grade level in the former and 48% in the latter — fewer by two and one percentage point, respectively.

Reacting to the assessments, Texas Education Commissioner Mike Morath applauded Texas teachers for the gains made in RLA and stressed the need for more work to be done to close the gaps in other subjects.

“[I]t’s clear that math performance is not where students need it to be for success after graduation,” he said.

“Pandemic-induced disruptions to learning exacerbated students’ difficulties in mastering fundamental math concepts. As a result, we must keep our foot on the gas to intensify efforts in providing targeted interventions and research-based education strategies to ensure that students obtain necessary foundational skills and concepts and achieve the desired academic outcomes not only in math but across all subject areas.”

As previously covered by The Dallas Express, TEA released other 2024 STAAR results for Algebra I, Biology, U.S. History, and English I and II.

There was little change in Algebra I, Biology, and English I compared to last year. At the same time, a 2% slip was recorded in U.S. History and a 4% increase in English II, the only subject in which students, on average, outperformed pre-lockdown scores.

Based on the currently available STAAR results for Spring 2024, Dallas ISD students’ math and science scores seem to show considerable shortcomings. For instance, only 18% of students met grade level in grade 5 science, and only 32% did so in grade 6 math. Dallas ISD has not performed well on the tests in the past. In the 2021-2022 school year, just 41% of district students scored at grade level or above on their STAAR exams compared to the statewide average of 48%.

Note: This article was updated on July 8, 2024, to include the most recent STAAR score data.