The national exam is taken by randomly selected fourth- and eighth-graders.
For this year’s test, fourth-grade students’ math scores fell two points, and the eighth-graders’ by three points, compared with the exam taken in 2013.
In addition, the average eighth-grade reading score dropped three points, while the fourth-graders’ was unchanged.
Education Secretary Arne Duncan said the news “isn’t great,” but he and other officials warned against viewing this year’s results as an indicator of a possible long-term trend. Read more at USA Today.