DPS Students Rank Lowest in Math, Reading in U.S. Compared with Big-City Districts

Jennifer Chambers, Detroit News, December 18, 2013

Students in Detroit Public Schools scored the lowest in the nation among big-city districts in math and tied for lowest in reading, according to national test results released Wednesday.

DPS’ fourth- and eighth-graders trailed 20 other large cities that participated in the National Assessment of Educational Progress Trial Urban District Assessment in mathematics, remaining in the bottom rung of test scores since first taking the test in 2009 and again in 2011 and 2013.


The test, known as TUDA, allows comparisons among large cities and the nation. Other school districts in the assessment include Chicago, the District of Columbia, Houston and New York City. Complete test results for all 21 districts are available here.

Achievement levels on the test fall into four categories: below basic, basic, proficient and advanced.

In all four categories, Detroit had the largest percentage of students who scored below basic in math and reading, meaning they lack fundamental skills in those areas.

In reading, 70 percent of fourth-graders tested below basic, as did 54 percent of eighth-graders. In 2011, 69 percent of Detroit fourth-graders tested below basic in reading, and 57 percent of eighth-graders were below basic.

The test found that 76 percent of eighth-grade students in Detroit scored below basic in math, and 65 percent of fourth-graders.

In 2011, 71 percent of eighth-graders and 66 percent of fourth-graders scored below basic in math. Proficiency rates stayed at 31 percent in math for fourth-graders, but fell from 25 percent to 21 percent in math for eighth-graders.

In eighth-grade math, Detroit saw a 6-point decline from 2011-13, the largest decrease on the test among the 21 urban districts.


The majority of students in the TUDA are black, Hispanic or from lower-economic households, test officials said. In Detroit, 88 percent of students are eligible for free or reduced lunch due to income status.

The test, which measures student proficiency in cities of 250,000 people or more, was taken by DPS students for the first time in 2009. In reading, DPS students registered historically low scores—the worst in the 40-year history of the test. The same happened in math.

In February 2011, DPS students scored the worst in the nation in science.


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  • Puggg

    So in a big pile of bad, Detroit is the worst of the bad. Which must mean Detroit’s blacks are the worst of all big city blacks.

  • smedley

    But the test was culturally insensitive. The math part asked about apples and oranges. A more culturally sensitive test would ask questions like – “If you got three bags of crack and four cracks whores who will give you an over and under for a bag how many crack whores won’t get a bag? Or how about “If yore baby mama got down wit five guys plus you then what is the probability that little Je’de’qwantious is your son? And the easiest one of all “If you got six bullets and need to cap that old white guy on the sidewalk how many shots do you need to kill him gangsta style? I guarantee you those Detroit scores will skyrocket.

    • Whitetrashgang

      That’s the problem not enough crack whore math questions, also need more jail type stories. If three ni66ers are on the downlow in cell block 8, which ni66er gets to sleep in on Saturday?

  • dd121

    They can’t be educated and they can’t be civilized.

    • Druid

      Do you mean to say all those years ago, what the Southerners were telling us was true all along?

      • dd121

        My Southern ancestors knew the truth about blacks perfectly well 150 years ago. That’s one reason why N.B. Forrest formed the KKK. He was trying to prevent feral blacks from being shoved down the throats of white people by the hateful Reconstructionists.

    • watling

      No, no, no. It’s all due to white oppression. Back when the Roman Empire was at its height and those romans were building roads, aquaducts, colloseums, temples and central heating systems, some poor unclothed bantu in his straw hut could feel the oppression even from several thousand miles away.

      You see, the mere presence of whitey on the same planet – even if he’s on a different continent – is sufficient to cause massive under-achievement and dysfunctional societies among blacks.

      The academic failure of Detroit’s blacks is all whitey’s fault. After all, it can’t be the case that blacks are simply not as clever, can it?

  • bigone4u

    Trying to teach most blacks how to read and do math is a waste of time. It makes them angry too because they see how inferior they are. What to do about blacks and Mexicans is now the most pressing issue since they are killing us and bankrupting us.

    • Pro_Whitey

      Looking back, I realize how lucky I was to have grown up just outside the forced busing zone, and I mean by about a half of a mile, maybe less. Sure my fellow students and I were a bit white trashy/petit bourgeois, but that was an exponentially lower level of dysfunction than I would have had to endure otherwise.
      And a show of hands, how many are surprised by these results? What are you, a bunch of double amputees?

    • Whitetrashgang

      Most blacks should have jobs like picking fruit and landscaping .Maybe lifting fat white woman into little rascals after 5.Or they could take them home and wash their backs.

  • DonReynolds

    Let’s be more direct for a moment. The blacks in Detroit are less intelligent than the blacks in Atlanta or the blacks in Philly or the blacks in Chicago or the blacks in any other major city in America. So give them the prize. They are the dumbest of the dumb.

  • APaige

    The more black a school or school system is the lower the students perform. If there was ONE high achieving majority black school we would hear about it all the time.

    • Pro_Whitey

      If I recall right, Dunbar High in D.C. was once a tremendous exception, and sent many graduates to the Ivy Leagues before there was affirmative action and quotas. Ironically, I believe it flourished during when D.C.’s schools were explicitly segregated, and I doubt it has since achieved at the same levels.

  • Chip Carver

    You can only do so much when you count with your fingers. Provided you even know how to do that.

  • Spartacus


    • You sure he isn’t just sitting on the toilet after a bucket of KFC?

      • Whitetrashgang

        He is thinking how to out smart a chicken who has his car keys.

  • rowingfool

    Citing results from these kind of studies are just another instance of “abhorrent and repugnant ideas” (as Devin Burghart would say) inflaming the minds of whackos who believe in this tripe about the validity of scientific testing.

    Besides, of what benefit are tests that objectively measure academic aptitude and progress if they reveal the differences between performance of ethnic groups in our Great Society? Aren’t we better off Ignorant? And Proud? I know I am and I stand solidly behind Devin Burghart.

    Some have said that “The Truth will set you Free”.

    Hogwash. “Devin Burghart is unimpressed. And….says, “No one’s denying them the right to think these ideas”, but that doesn’t give them the right to voice their stupid opinions. These are the very types of Ideas that are poisonous to “people in the mainstream everywhere” and those who persist in mouthing them will be “pushed further and further to the fringes” until they are pushed off the table and onto the floor, where they will be ground under the heel of our State apparatus that takes its responsibility (to protect the People from these “freethinking” evildoers) seriously.

    Let’s all get behind Burghart on this. Suppress hate speech! Ban scientific Testing!

  • dave

    The only way the primitive black frontal lobe can compete with the white frontal lobe is through affirmative action and political correctness. Affirmative action means stupid.

  • IstvanIN

    On the radio this morning the host was talking about how the US seems to be scoring lower and lower academically when compared to other, as he put it (I am sure inadvertently) civilized nations. I wanted to jump through the speaker and shout “because we are becoming more and more third world”! These creatures are just incapable.

    • BonusGift

      Yep, it’s basic math; for example, a 90% white America scores higher than an 80% white America, which scores higher than … Steve Sailer has done the math and I’ve even checked and it really is that simple. “‘Demography is destiny” for many things, test scores included.

  • Hunter Morrow

    So the 4 Categories would break out something like…

    Advanced=A. Even starts with an A, simple

    Proficient=Proficient is better than just competence,
    It implies further prowess. This would be a B

    Basic=C. About everybody should be about basic, especially after 8 years of school

    Below Basic=Euphemistic for Retarded and as Advanced is A, Retarded should be what Ds and Fs are. You advance the timing, you retard the timing. There is something wrong with these people, probably racially or some genetic malady like Down’s Syndrome if they are White or Asian. This is the D and F range. This is figurative if not literal retardation.

    Well, looking at the bell curve, 85 and below is considered mild to clinical retardation, half of blacks will score below an 85 and nearly 70 percent will have an IQ under 100 so is there anything particularly “racist” about 70 percent of blacks scoring Below Basic?
    No, it is pretty much exactly what you’d expect. If blacks performed much better than they do in the DPS system you’d have to suspect cheating or a bias in the test or watering it down so that blacks could pass.

    • Rhialto

      Of course it’s Racist. Any fact that is not consistent with Liberal positions on race, is, by definition, Racist, Ipso facto.

  • Alexandra1973

    A few years ago I was watching the news and they were whining about how poorly Cleveland schools did. Well, I saw that virtually all the students were black, and I was thinking, there’s your problem!