TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WFLA) — Despite plummeting student test scores nationwide, Hillsborough County was highlighted as a leader in the latest National Association of Educational Progress report.

The NAEP is most commonly known as the “nation’s report card.” It surveyed thousands of students across the nation.

Florida officials are correlating the state’s results with the reopening of schools during the pandemic.

“It wasn’t easy during the school year, but the fact that we actually had kids in school – that shows you that we compared very favorably to the rest of the country and that wasn’t an accident,” Gov. Ron DeSantis said.

Florida’s Education Commissioner Manny Diaz drew a similar conclusion.

“Because of the policies that the state of Florida took and the governor, DeSantis, took,” Diaz said. “Hillsborough stayed open and look at the results that Hillsborough has, and you have to compare apples to apples.”

The report did not analyze correlations between school shutdowns and scores but it did find that Hillsborough County ranks first in Florida for 4th grade reading and math.

“While so many school districts across the nation could not open the doors to be able serve children, we were relentless to be able to make certain we had the right curriculum content and grade level exposure to our students that allowed them and led them to be successful everyday,” Hillsborough County Superintendent Addison Davis said.

The next NAEP assessment will be in 2024.

“Florida’s doing things right, but we’re not satisfied, if that’s your question,” Commissioner Diaz said. “We want to continue to see improvement and we want to continue to see our students be number one and continue to lead the nation in education.”