West Virginia students will take part in a new $3.5 digital math program starting next year.

An international nonprofit research group will study how it helps students learn math.

West Virginia's 8th grade math proficiency score, according to Kids Count, says 4 out of 5 of the state's 8th graders (79%) are not proficient, which puts West Virginia at 48th among the 50 states for proficiency.

Overall, Kids Count says the Mountain State school system is ranked 47th in the USA, or fourth worst in the nation for a second year running, while other national rating groups have ranked the state even worse.

The new math program is being rolled-out for the state's elementary students.

West Virginia's high school students score among the lowest in the USA on math assessments with only one third of West Virginia students who took the ACT in 2012 tested as ready for college-level coursework in math.

The program is fully digital and centered around an online curriculum that provides instant feedback for students and teachers.

The announcement says the research program will be placed in the curriculum in more than 50 second-grade and fifth-grade math classes across the state beginning in August 2014.

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