Of the 83,000 3rd graders who took the test with similar questions, 48% passed it, an increase of two points. Still, 52% of 3rd graders failed the reading portion of the test.
"How can half of the kids in our state be failing reading at the end of third grade and any of think that's okay? That is not okay," said Rebecca Gau with Stand For Children Arizona.
Gau believes many solutions lie in solving Arizona's education funding and teacher crisis.
"More teachers left midway through the school year this past year," said Gau. "If you can't have strong teachers in the classroom, how are you going to improve reading?"