Posted on September 11, 2012

U.S. Department of Education: 79% of Chicago 8th Graders Not Proficient in Reading

Terence P. Jeffrey, CNS News, September 10, 2012

Seventy-nine percent of the 8th graders in the Chicago Public Schools are not grade-level proficient in reading, according to the U.S. Department of Education, and 80 percent are not grade-level proficient in math.

Chicago public school teachers went on strike on Monday and one of the major issues behind the strike is a new system Chicago plans to use for evaluating public school teachers in which student improvement on standardized tests will count for 40 percent of a teacher’s evaluation. Until now, the evaluations of Chicago public school teachers have been based on what a Chicago Sun Times editorial called a “meaningless checklist.”

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With these NAEP test results, only 19 percent of Chicago public school 8thgraders rated proficient in reading while another 2 percent rated advanced—for a total of 21 percent who rated proficient or better.

79 percent of Chicago public school 8th graders were not grade-level proficient in reading. According to the U.S. Department of Education, this included 43 percent who rated “basic” and 36 percent who rated “below basic.”

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With these NAEP test results, only 17 percent of Chicago public school 8th graders rated proficient in math while another 3 percent rated advanced—for a total of 20 percent who rated proficient or better.

Thus, 80 percent of Chicago public school 8th graders were not grade-level proficient in math. According to the U.S. Department of Education, this included 40 percent who rated “basic” in math and 40 percent who rated “below basic.”

[Editor’s Note: According to this website, Chicago Public Schools are 41.6% black, 44.1% Hispanic, and 8.8% white.]