(JTNews) – Young students in Washington, D.C. are scoring lower on tests in critical subjects following the coronavirus pandemic.

The math proficiency rate in grades 3-12 declined to 19% in 2022, down from 31% in 2019, pre-pandemic, according to the Washington Examiner. Moreover, English proficiency rates dropped to 31% from 37% in the same period.

The rates declined more sharply among minority communities, the outlet noted. Black student proficiency in language arts dropped to 20% from 28% while Hispanic students saw a decline from 37% to 31%.

In math, meanwhile, black students dropped from 21% proficiency to a mere 9%. Hispanics, moreover, witnessed a drop from 31% to 17%. White and Asian students witnessed declines in both subjects as well, but both groups remained at 70% proficiency or above in both subjects.

Washington, D.C. imposed strict COVID-19 lockdown regulations on schools during the pandemic. It began to scale back some of its mandates for schools earlier this year.

Parents Defending Education President Nicki Neily told the Examiner it was “heartbreaking that the same people who’ve weaponized the term ‘equity’ have disproportionately hurt those students most in need.”

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