Pinpointing national and world locations seems to be a problem these days for youngsters in schools --- and, as mentioned in last Monday’s Grumpy Editor, geography fuzziness also extends to grownups in newsrooms.
Analyzing test data from the U.S. Department of Education, the Government Accountability Office found only 27 percent of eighth graders nationwide scored at either the proficient (24 percent) or advanced (3 percent) level on standardized geography tests last year, reported CNS News.
Nearly half (48 percent) exhibited only partial mastery of the subject, and a quarter (25 percent) scored below basic competency on the geography tests, it added.
Last year’s tally showed virtually no improvement since 1994, when 4 percent of eighth graders tested at the advanced level, 24 percent at the proficient level, 43 percent at the basic level, and 29 percent below basic competency.
Lack of geography knowledge also showed up this month with some newsroom writers and editors, as pointed out here last week when major national print/broadcast outlets --- in heavily-reported stories --- placed dry, sunny Los Angeles and Southern California in a storm-triggered mudslide area that actually was in Kern County in California's Central Valley.
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