LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — The next generation of Michiganders improved across the board in their state test scores from Spring 2022.

According to the Michigan Department of Education, on average, from third to seventh grade, 54.5% of school districts increased their achievement scores in English language arts (ELA) and 4.0% of districts stayed the same as compared to last year.

For mathematics, on average from third to seventh grades, 55.9% of school districts increased their achievement scores and 7.4% of districts stayed the same.

Count of Districts or PSAs That Had a Change in Proficiency from 2021 to 2022

press release
*Entities had to have a valid district aggregate score on M-STEP in both 2021 and 2022 to be included in this analysis. 

Last year was a stronger year for our children, given the courageous work of our students and staff, but we continue to have a lot of room for improvement. Supported by an extraordinary fiscal year 2023 budget recently negotiated by Governor Whitmer and the state legislature, this school year will be critical to the growth and achievement of our students.”

State Superintendent Dr. Michael Rice

Participation across the Great Lakes State in taking the 2022 M-STEP was more than 95%, while only around 70% of students took the M-STEP in 2021.

Statewide 2022 M-STEP Results 
(Percent Proficient or Above)

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*Due to standard setting with low participation numbers for the science assessments in 2021, performance levels and cut scores had to be reset in 2022. This requires a new starting point for science score trends in 2022. 

While the numbers are looking good across the board, a report from Michigan State University’s Education Police Innovation Collaborative is showing that third-graders were behind in their reading scores.

Around 5,650 students had reading scores low enough that they could be required to repeat third grade.

Director of EPIC Katharine Strunk says this is evidence that students will need additional support to recover from the educational impacts brought on by the pandemic. 

“More than anything, this shows us that the pandemic has taken a toll on many of Michigan’s students, and more are struggling with literacy in the third grade than were prior to the pandemic,” Strunk said. “Michigan’s schools and students will need increased investments and support to recover academically.”

In the spring of 2022, more students scored below 1252, the state-determined benchmark for one grade level behind in reading.

Being one grade level behind means they could be held back under Michigan’s Read by Grade Three law.