Researchers at Education Next have graded state proficiency standards on an A–F scale since 2005. When the Common Core initiative began in 2009, not a single state had achieved, by today’s standards, an A for having a proficiency bar tightly aligned with NAEP. Six years later, dramatic progress had taken place, with 16 states receiving A grades and 27 others receiving grades in the range of B+ to B- by 2015. The trend continued slightly upwards in 2017, with 4 of the 5 states that had received F grades in 2009 achieving a C+ or higher for their proficiency standards in 2017.
You can learn more about our methodology for grading the states, view the rigor of your state’s proficiency standards using our interactive graphic, or read the full article by Daniel Hamlin and Paul E. Peterson.