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Florida’s Orange County Public Schools Joins Program That Provides Student Achievement Data at Urban District Level


For Release: April 20, 2023 

Contact: Stephaan Harris, (202) 357-7504,;
Tonya Harris, (202) 393-2427,

Florida’s Orange County Public Schools Joins Program That Provides
Student Achievement Data at Urban District Level

WASHINGTON – Orange County (Florida) Public Schools has been selected to join the Trial Urban District Assessment (TUDA) program to measure student progress in math, reading, science, and writing.

The Orlando-area school district joins 26 urban districts in participating in the district-level National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), also known as The Nation’s Report Card.

Every state administers the NAEP assessments, allowing educators, families, and policymakers to examine student achievement over time and across the nation using a single benchmark.

A primary goal of the NAEP TUDA program is to spotlight urban education and achievement trends. Participating districts often collaborate around best practices, teaching and learning strategies, and policymaking, with data informing academic improvement efforts. Participation is voluntary and districts must meet eligibility criteria related to size and demographics. 

Orange County is the eighth largest school district in the country and the fourth largest in Florida. Other Florida districts that participate in the program include Miami-Dade, Duval County, and Hillsborough County.

“Orange County Public Schools is committed to student success and insists on data-driven decisions districtwide. As we monitor student trends here and across the country, I believe we are better able to inform and amend classroom practices for the benefit of students,” said Maria Vazquez, superintendent of Orange County Public Schools.

The most recent Nation’s Report Card, released in October, reflected the pandemic’s impact on student achievement. Fourth and eighth graders across the country experienced major declines in math and reading, with particularly steep declines in eighth-grade math scores.

In many ways the TUDA results mirrored national trends; however, there were signs of resilience in urban schools seen in the NAEP data when compared to the nation.

For example, Los Angeles, Miami-Dade, Philadelphia, and New York City schools did not experience the eighth-grade math declines seen nationally. TUDA districts also didn’t see the across-the-board declines in eighth grade reading experienced nationally. In addition, over half of the participating TUDA districts had no significant change in fourth or eighth grade reading after the pandemic.

“I applaud Orange County Public Schools for volunteering to participate in TUDA, which demonstrates the commitment of big-city school systems to high standards, higher student achievement, and greater transparency,” said Ray Hart, executive director of the Council of the Great City Schools, which advocated for the launch of the TUDA program two decades ago and continues to advise on policies related to it. “The district’s inclusion will provide the nation’s urban school educators with the tools and data we need to address unfinished learning and boost academic achievement.”

Added former North Carolina Governor Beverly Perdue, chair of the National Assessment Governing Board, which oversees The Nation's Report Card: “As we work to help students make up lost ground and accelerate their learning, it’s critical that we use robust and transparent data to guide decisions. We are thrilled to have Orange County Public Schools join the TUDA program, allowing district leaders to use these valuable NAEP results to improve education for all students.”

About the National Assessment Governing Board:
The National Assessment Governing Board is an independent, nonpartisan board whose members include governors, state legislators, local and state school officials, educators, business representatives, and members of the general public. Congress created the 26-member Governing Board in 1988 to set policy for the National Assessment of Educational Progress. For more information, visit

About the Council of the Great City Schools:
The Council of the Great City Schools is the only national organization exclusively representing the needs of urban public schools. Composed of 78 large city school districts, its mission is to promote the cause of urban schools and to advocate for inner-city students through legislation, research, and media relations. The organization also provides a network for school districts sharing common problems to exchange information, and to collectively address new challenges as they emerge to deliver the best possible education for urban youth.