Increase the proportion of 4th-graders with reading skills at or above the proficient level — AH‑05 Data Methodology and Measurement

This objective is a Leading Health Indicator (LHI). Learn about LHIs.

About the National Data


Baseline: 36.6 percent of 4th grade students attending public and private schools had reading skills at or above the proficient achievement level for their grade in 2017

Target: 41.5 percent

Number of 4th grade students scoring at the proficiency level or higher for grade level in the reading skills test administered by the National Assessment of Educational Progress.
Number of 4th grade students attending public or private schools.
Target-setting method
Target-setting method details
Linear trend fitted using weighted least squares and a projection at the 50 percent prediction interval.
Target-setting method justification
Trend data were evaluated for this objective. Using historical data points, a trend line was fitted using weighted least squares, and the trend was projected into the next decade. This method was used because three or more comparable data points were available, the projected value was within the range of possible values, and a projection at the 50 percent prediction interval was selected because the Healthy People 2030 Workgroup Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) anticipated a positive trend will continue as seen in the previous decade. The SMEs took into account promising and robust evidence-based interventions available for improving youth reading proficiency when selecting the target.


Methodology notes

The proficient achievement level is one of three National Assessment of Educational Progress (NEAP) achievement levels: basic, proficient, and advanced. Minimum cut-off scores are established for each achievement level by a standard setting process. The proficient achievement level represents solid academic performance for the grade level assessed. The NAEP reading assessment measures the reading and comprehension skills of students in grades 4, 8, and 12 by asking them to read selected grade-appropriate passages and answer questions based on what they have read. The 2009 NAEP Reading Framework is based on the following definition of reading: Reading is an active and complex process that involves: understanding written text, developing and interpreting meaning, using meaning as appropriate to type of text, purpose, and situation.


Comparable HP2020 objective
Retained, which includes core objectives that are continuing from Healthy People 2020 with no change in measurement.

1. Because Healthy People 2030 objectives have a desired direction (e.g., increase or decrease), the confidence level of a one-sided prediction interval can be used as an indication of how likely a target will be to achieve based on the historical data and fitted trend.