BECKLEY, WV (WVNS)– The National Center for Education Statistics reported a major decline in both reading and mathematics assessments during the pandemic.

Between 2020 and 2022, reading scores saw the largest drop since 1990, and math scores dropped for the first time.

Two areas of focus were McDowell and Mercer County. According to the data from the West Virginia Board of Education, McDowell County has one of the lowest assessment achievements.

82 percent of students either partially meet or do not meet assessment standards in mathematics. And 72 percent of students either partially meet or do not meet the standards in reading.

It leaves a collective of 18 percent of students meeting mathematics testing and 28 percent meeting the reading standard.

Dr. Sonya White, the Teaching and Learning Officer with the State Board of Education talked about why the numbers look the way they do.

“I think just having that face-to-face time with their teacher every day and getting consistent instruction probably lead to the score decrease we saw in 2021,” Dr. White said.

Over in Mercer County, 69 percent don’t meet mathematic assessment standards while 60 percent don’t meet reading testing standards.

59News reached out to Mercer County Schools and have yet to receive a response.