Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Now, I openly admit that I don't believe the reported results of any standardized achievement tests from the Pittsburgh Public Schools or virtually any other school district in the country, but this story is classic. The A+ Schools annual report states that in just 24 short years, black students and white students could be performing at the same achievement level. Public education getting the job done. In 2035.

Racial achievement gap closing faster in Pittsburgh schools

Monday, November 14, 2011
By Eleanor Chute, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

While Pittsburgh Public Schools still has a significant racial achievement gap between black and white students, the gap has begun to close at a faster pace.

That was the conclusion of the annual report to the community released today by A+ Schools, an education advocacy organization.

The report showed the gap between the percentages of white and black students scoring proficient or advanced on state tests went from 34.9 percentage points in 2008 to 30.6 percentage points this year in reading and from 28.5 percentage points in 2008 to 27.2 percentage points in math.

Carey Harris, executive director of A+ Schools, said that the performance of both white and black students improved, but the black student performance improved more.

A+ Schools reported that if the gap continues to close at the same rate as the previous four years, it would take 40 years to close the math gap and 34 years for reading.

With the improved pace of the past year, the gap in both subjects could be closed in 24 years.

"It's far too long," said Ms. Harris, but she said, "Hard work is making a difference."

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