Horizon KidsAccording to the Nation’s Report Card, America’s fourth graders could use a little extra help with their reading skills. Nationally, two out of three fourth graders were unable to read at grade level in 2011, according to the findings of the National Assessment of Educational Progress, a U.S. Department of Education project authorized by Congress in 1969 to evaluate student performance.

While fourth graders have made small gains over the past decade, 33% of the nation’s 9 to 10-year olds are reading below grade level and 33% demonstrate only basic reading skills. A mere 34% of U.S. fourth graders have achieved mastery of grade-level reading skills with only 8% of those demonstrating advanced proficiency. A decade ago, 38% of fourth graders were reading below grade level; 33% at the basic level; and 29% had achieved proficiency with 6% reading above grade level. The small gains realized leveled off in 2007. Reading proficiency figures have remained stagnant since the 2007 assessment.

Ohio fourth graders performed slightly but not significantly better than their national peers, scoring 224 on reading tests compared to the national average score of 220. Fewer Ohio fourth graders read below grade level, 29% compared to 33% nationally. More Ohio students have basic reading skills, 37% compared to 33% nationally. At 34%, Ohio fourth graders are even with their national peers in proficiency achievement and, with only 7% reading above grade level, marginally behind the national average of 8%.

Horizon Education’s 21st Century after-school and summer camp programs can help your child improve his reading skills and become a more proficient reader.