To the editor:

The National Assessment of Educational Progress scores are out, and the numbers are exactly where we thought they would be. North Carolina has not seen scores this low in over 30 years, and the achievement gap for students of color is wider than it has ever been. Instead of placing blame, it is imperative that all educators, parents, community leaders and policymakers be laser-focused on how we deal with this crisis. The consequences of doing this wrong could be grave for a whole generation.

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