TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -

Florida's fourth grade students continue to outpace the national average in reading, according to results of the 2013 National Assessment of Educational Progress.

The report, released Thursday, also shows all Florida subgroups within fourth grade reading outperformed their national counterparts in the percentage of students scoring at or above "basic."

"Under Governor Scott's leadership, Florida students continue to make outstanding academic progress and is an example of what can be accomplished when we focus on what is important," said state Commissioner of Education Pam Stewart. "Our teachers have done a tremendous job helping their students achieve at higher levels and deserve to be rewarded for their hard work."

Over the past 10 years, Florida has improved its average scores in reading and math in fourth grade and eighth grade. Other highlights include:

  • Florida is the only state to have narrowed the achievement gap between white and black students at both grades four and eight in both reading and math.
  • The percentage of Florida's hispanic and black fourth and eighth grade students scoring at or above "basic" in reading is significantly higher than the national average.
  • The percentage of fourth and eighth grade with disabilities scoring at or above "basic" is higher than that of their national peers in both reading and math.

In math, fourth grade scores went up from 2003. Eighth grade scores also increased.