Here's a painful snapshot of a major Kentucky failure. For our African-American students, we deliver less at every level than we do for our white students, and we are not getting them close to the 100/proficient level we ought to provide.
I can't graph a long-term trend because we made major testing changes in 1999 and in 2007 that mean results really are not comparable.
However, I will note that from 1999 to 2006, the gap narrowed at the elementary level, stayed roughly the same for middle schools, and expanded for high schools. Both groups improved over those years, but where we wanted to see African-American students improving with extra speed, we only saw that at the elementary level.
This hurts. It hurts our children, and it hurts our shared future. As a commonwealth, we have to find the strength and implement the strategies that will produce success for students from all backgrounds.
(For readers who are not already immersed in Kentucky testing terms, the two previous posts summarize the Academic Index and the student performance levels behind the Index itself.)