Students in State Show Gains in English and Math Scores

Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times, August 15, 2011

California students showed moderate gains in English and math on standardized test scores released by the state Department of Education on Monday, continuing a long-term trend. But the results also reveal that the state has a long way to go to bring students up to grade level.

Overall, 54% of California students scored at the “proficient” level or higher in English-language arts, compared with 52% last year; and 50% scored proficient or better in math, compared with 48% last year. {snip}

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The results for the Los Angeles Unified School District, the state’s largest school system, also mirrored past years: Growth was better than for the state overall, but scores still fell below the state average.

Students who were considered at grade level–or proficient–in English-language arts increased from 41% to 44%. In math, from 39% to 43%.

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Across L.A. Unified, fewer than 20% of high school students scored proficient or better in general mathematics, algebra 1 and 2 and geometry. In fourth grade, by contrast, 67% of students tested as proficient or better in math.

Another persistent issue is the sharp achievement gap separating Asian and white students from Latino and black students, although the latter groups saw gains.

Statewide, 76% of Asian students and 71% of white students were proficient or better in English, for example, compared with 42% of Latinos and 41% of African Americans.

In math, the numbers are 76% for Asians, 61% for whites, 41% for Latinos and 34% for African Americans.

{snip}

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  • Stephanie

    Those tests are culturally biased- designed for white kids from English speaking households. Wait a minute- how is it that Asians do better than whites? You mean a student who just recently came over from China not speaking a word of English and coming from a culture that’s drastically different from white Americans can do better than Lakeesha or Jose?

    Explain THAT- liberals!!!!

  • Lucas

    So if there was a 2% improvement in English language proficiency I wonder how much of that was a result of a slight drop in illegal immigration and how much was a result of lowering the standards.

  • John Engelman

    According to “The 10,000 Year Explosion: How Civilization Accelerated Human Evolution” the longer a racial group has practiced agriculture and urban civilization, the lower its crime rate, and the higher its average IQ is likely to be.

    http://www.amren.com/ar/2009/05/index.html

    This is because agriculture and urban civilization exert different population pressures than hunting and gathering. Whites and Orientals owe their superior academic performance to nine to ten thousands of years of agriculture, and four to five thousands of years of urban civilization.

  • John Engelman

    No one but a huckster for Charles Atlas thinks it is possible to take a sickly, fifteen year old “97 pound weakling” and turn him into an award winning athlete.

    Nevertheless, many expect the public school school system to turn virtually any child into an excellent student, and seem willing to punish teachers who fail at the transformation.

    Without talent there cannot be achievement.

  • Former SoCA teacher

    BOY am I glad to be retired!!! I spent my entire teaching career trying to make silk purses out of sows’ ears — and the idiots at the top never did figure out it ain’t gonna happen. Looks like they STILL haven’t figured it out. It’s kind of like trying to force Cambodian kids to become professional basketball players….

  • Anonymous

    I work in such a school where there are ‘gains’ from the latino and black students. NEVER believe that they are real gains. It’s all data manipulation, dumbed down tests and outright cheating by all parties concerned. I know this as an insider. Black students have no interest in book learnin’, and although most latinos are smarter, only a few ever care to study or learn at a higher level.

  • Anonymous

    In response to comment #3 you just contradicted yourself with #4. In other words, the environment can bring out good genes but the genes have to be there in the first place.

  • (AWG) Average White Guy

    In Wisconsin only 4 percent of black High School graduates are ready for college.

    We read:

    Racial disparities also remained a problem in the state for the Class of 2011. The average composite score for black students was nearly seven points below that of white students – 16.2 compared with 23.1. Nationwide, the difference between the two groups was 5.4 points.

    The percentage of 2011 graduates prepared for college-level core subject areas also varied greatly by race, with 36% of white students in Wisconsin considered ready for college classes compared with only 4% of black students.

    http://goo.gl/IZSgK

  • Bon, From the Land of Babble

    No one but a huckster for Charles Atlas thinks it is possible to take a sickly, fifteen year old “97 pound weakling” and turn him into an award winning athlete.

    –John Engelman

    Excellent analogy, John. This is EXACTLY what the educational system expects us teachers to with ’97-load IQs’ — turn them into planetary scientists, physicians and MENSA members. No one has been able to accomplish this!! There is NO proven method to raise IQs. Remember, these tests have been massively dumbed down, reflected in the rising test scores.

    As Charles Murray explains in Real Education, the math section does not even test mathematical ability, only familiarity with math concepts.

    Without talent there cannot be achievement.

    This is exactly right. And I am sick and tired of reading about dirt poor mexican children, exalted in the media as “the first to go to college”, overcoming “untold hurdles and all the odd”, coming to America for a “better life” — showered with scholarships, awards, accolades and full rides.

    We Whites could fill this board with stories of overcoming extreme hardship, fighting against the odds, the “first to go to college” in our families — stories of success built from scratch through hard work, focus, drive, and, I suppose a desire to eat!! All achieved without government assistance, full rides or scholarships. My mother picked and packed peaches in 100+ degree heat in the Central Valley of California to put herself through college — a job Americans won’t do according to the government!!

    No one in the media tells our stories. According to the media, ALL of us Whites are born with silver spoons in our mouths, afforded unearned privilege and wealth, get rich on the “backs of the poor.” This is certainly what my students believe about Whites!

    Our stories should be told and publicized to counteract the media’s LIES.

    It is obscene that untold billions of dollars are wasted on 97-load IQs while our bright White children are completely ignored, if not looked on with contempt and DENIED a chance to succeed, by the educational system.

    It is obscene.

    Bon

  • panjoomby

    Society erroneously believes education makes people smarter – it does not! Yet, education’s touted as the answer for everything. Sadly, education doesn’t make anyone smarter than they were preset to be to begin with.

    To make matters worse, the mean IQ of teachers has dropped over the last 40-50 years. What matters most is IQ of the student, a distant second most is the IQ of the teacher!

  • Bon, From the Land of Babble

    Statewide, 76% of Asian students and 71% of white students were proficient or better in English, for example, compared with 42% of Latinos and 41% of African Americans.

    Did you notice that “white” is not capitalized (while every other race/ethnic group is)? This is done on purpose to debase and demean Whites and let them know their place in the LAUSD.

    Please capitalize the word “White” when referring to White people!!

    As for White students in LAUSD. WHAT White students? I’ve read reports that Whites comprise somewhere between .3% and 10% of the LAUSD, AND, according to the LAUSD, White means any of the original peoples of Europe, the Middle East or North Africa.

    As for Euro-Whites, I believe the .3% figure!!

    http://goo.gl/aQ4WC

    Bon

  • panjoomby

    The better the instruction the more high ability & low ability learners are spread out – good teaching creates bigger racial differences! The way to lower differences is to have more 2-digit IQ teachers, because poor instruction will spread out the learners less. High ability gain more from instruction in general, but they gain much more from good instruction. Good instruction just bounces off the heads of low ability students. The better the instruction the larger the gap between haves & have-nots! (Just like capitalism spreads out the earners from the non-earners!)Individual differences exist & sadly, GOOD systems MAXIMIZE differences!

  • john

    When they say a certain percentage of Black students are ready for college, what constitutes “ready”? Got the iPod, got the Michael Jordan shoes, got the financial aid…