The government has failed to meet a 2020 goal that Tasmanian students would be at or above the national average in reading, writing and maths.
Preliminary results from 2021 NAPLAN tests were released on Wednesday and showed Tasmanian year 3 students remained below the national average in reading, writing, spelling, grammar and punctuation, and numeracy.
The year level performed its worst in grammar and punctuation.
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Year 5 students were below the national average in the five key learning areas as were year 7 and year 9 students.
Year 7 and 9 students performed most poorly in writing as did year 5 students.
Demographer Lisa Denny said the results indicated there had been a big decline in spelling for year 3 students though marginal long-term improvements in all areas for year 5 students, except for spelling and grammar.
She said for year 7 students, there had been long-term declines in all areas except for writing.
The biggest decline was for grammar and punctuation.
Dr Denny said there had been a substantial long-term decline in reading among year 9 students, slight declines in spelling and grammar and punctuation, and slight improvements in writing and literacy.
Labor education spokesman Josh Willie said the 2021 results showed Tasmania was the worst of any state in every age group in reading and the second worst in every age group in writing.
He said the state was the worst in every age group in spelling and grammar and punctuation, and the worst in years 5, 7, and 9 in numeracy.
"Whilst acknowledging that NAPLAN is a snapshot in time and could still be improved, it is an agreed national assessment and the results can't be ignored," Mr Willie said.
Education Minister Sarah Courtney noted there were long-term gains in reading for year 3 and year 5 students, in writing for year 3 students, and in spelling and numeracy for year 5 students.
"Tasmania's results in reading at all year levels indicate that this is one of our strongest domains," she said.
"We have set a target for government schools that by 2029, all students will be able to read about the NAPLAN national minimum standard before they enter year 7."
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