September is here and family households are abuzz with getting back to school for the fall. And despite the ever-lingering presence of COVID-19 in our lives, most children are going back to school in person and unmasked, restoring some sense of normalcy to the fall season nationwide for the first time in nearly three years.

But somewhat perfectly timed with our return to school, several news outlets are reporting on a new nationwide assessment by the National Assessment of Educational Progress, or NAEP, of reading and mathematics scores. The report shows that scores have gone down since 2020—the biggest drop in scores that we’ve seen in 30 years. The Washington Post describes the drop as a “plunge to levels unseen for decades,” and the New York Times claims that the pandemic has “erased two decades of progress in math and reading.” To read the full story.