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New AzMERIT Scores Show Modest Improvement In Student Performance

Arizona public school students showed slight improvement on the state standardized test last year. That’s according to the latest data released from the Arizona Department of Education.

The grade level passing rates in the math and English language arts portions of AzMERIT ranged from 30 to 50 percent. For the most part though, each grade showed a 1 to 4 percentage point improvement from 2016 to 2017.

RELATED: Search AzMERIT results by school, district

"We are excited to see incremental gains year over year on the AzMERIT test scores," said Christie Silverstein with Expect More Arizona. "We know there are some bright spots, some great teachers some great students  across the state who have worked hard over the past few years with higher standards."

Seventh graders made the largest gains in reaching highly proficient levels in math, going from 10 percent in 2016 to 18 percent in 2017.

The results, released Wednesday do show some improvement from 2016, in areas including sixth- and seventh-grade math, and third- and fourth-grade English.

State Schools Superintendent Diane Douglas says she’s pleased scores are “modestly moving in the right direction.”

And, to get some perspective on the results, the Show spoke earlier with Stacey Morley, government affairs director with Stand For Children Arizona.

Carrie Jung Senior Field Correspondent, Education Desk Carrie Jung began her public radio career in Albuquerque, N.M., where she fell in love with the diverse cultural scene and unique political environment of the Southwest. Jung has been heard on KJZZ since 2013 when she served as a regular contributor to the Fronteras Desk from KUNM Albuquerque. She covered several major stories there including New Mexico's Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage and Albuquerque's failed voter initiative to ban late-term abortions. Jung has also contributed stories about environmental and Native American issues to NPR's Morning Edition, PRI's The World, Al Jazeera America, WNYC's The Takeaway, and National Native News. She earned a bachelor's degree in psychology and a master's in marketing, both from Clemson University. When Jung isn't producing content for KJZZ she can usually be found buried beneath mounds of fabric and quilting supplies. She recently co-authored a book, "Sweet And Simple Sewing," with her mother and sister, who are fabric designers.