Students preparing to leave high school are faring no better in reading or math than students did four decades ago.
That's according to a government report - popularly called the nation's report card - that was released Thursday.
Test scores for 17-year-olds have changed little since the early 1970s. But students ages 9 and 13 have improved their performances during the same period.
The report says black and Hispanic students had the greatest gain in their scores in reading and math since the 1970s.
Officials say the results for 17-year-old students did not improve because more lower-performing students were staying in school and not dropping out. Those students dragged down the averages.