Vittert: America is failing the next generation

On Balance with Leland Vittert

(NewsNation) — America is failing, and until we admit the problem honestly and fully, we can’t fix it.

Sure, our politicians are part of it. But in the end, we are failing the next generation, and thus jeopardizing everything great about America.

The New York Times released a devastating report card on America’s schools — more precisely on how much the pandemic hurt kids education. Not surprisingly, it hurt the poorest kids the most.

Roughly only one-third of kids are proficient for their grade level in the basics. In math, 26% of 8th graders are proficient, and 36% of 4th graders are proficient. When it comes to reading, 31% of 8th graders are proficient, and 33% of 4th graders are proficient

4th grade math scores are down 5 points compared to the 2019 school year. It doesn’t sound like a lot — but its the biggest hit in 50 years.

The most obvious answer here: Is red vs. blue right? The schools that locked down, kids suffered, and the kids who stayed in person excelled. That would be simple. To be fair, it’s not that simple. Nor is the administration’s answer.

Schools got a $122 billion to reopen last year, and most have not been used. School systems throughout the country reported using less than 15% of the latest round of federal education funding allotted to them during the last school year.

Still, we are failing our kids.

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