Income Gap Widens In D.C., Maryland, Virginia Reading Scores
By Sarah Ford on January 28, 2014
Source: WAMU 88.5
Maryland and Virginia are two of eight states, along with the District, where there are gaps of 34 percentage points or more in reading test scores between children from low income and higher income families. That's according to a new report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation.
Reading at the end of the third grade is considered a "key" milestone for children — it's when educators say students stop learning to read and start reading to learn. Research shows children who read at grade level by the end of the third grade are more likely to graduate from high school.
"Third grade reading and math is a huge predictor of high school graduation rates and how they do if they graduate, how they do in the workforce," says HyeSook Chung, with DC Action for Children.
Approximately 60 percent of fourth graders from higher income families in Maryland, Virginia and D.C. are reading at grade level. That compares with 24 percent of low income children in Maryland, 21 percent in Virginia and 13 percent in D.C. who are reading at grade level. The gap between high and low income students in D.C. is the highest in the nation.