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Gaps in Academic Achievement Persist for Low-Income and Latino Students

By Angel Gonzalez, Director of Research
All students deserve a chance to succeed. Although we who care about education believe this, it is clear that some students do not get the same opportunities as others based on the conditions into which they are born. In the statewide math test, only 30 percent of low-income students scored proficient or advanced on the test while only 22 percent of Latino students scored proficient or advanced. These data points are jarring when you consider that, statewide, 42 percent of students scored proficient or advanced. In reviewing the data below, you can see that the same story bears out for English Language Arts. Click below to see how demographics compare for these two subjects.

A deeper look at five large districts and charter schools as a sector in Idaho shows that districts did better when they have a lower concentration of poor and Latino students. This may not be new news, but, our analysis also shows that when these districts and the charter sector have less poor and Latino students, it generally made greater gains for those two student populations. Click below to discover the differences from our district and charter comparison.

It is clear that Idahoans have a deep desire to improve education for all in this state. Although these intentions are good, we, as a state, have to point out where we are failing. It is clear that poor and Latino students in this state are not receiving the education or resources that they need to succeed in school. For this problem to be fixed, it has to be discussed openly and frequently. So, let’s talk about it.

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