Wednesday, May 24, 2006

School District seeks to narrow achievement gap between Hispanic and white students

Mike Saccone:

Working with parents, teachers and the students themselves, School District 51 has pushed during the past two years to address the disparity between white and minority students. Standing out among these gaps has been the growing gulf between white and Hispanic graduation rates.

Local Hispanic students finish high school at rates consistently lower than their white peers and district and statewide averages, according to data analysis by The Daily Sentinel. Based on statistics obtained from School District 51 and the Colorado Department of Education, between 2000 and 2004, 85.3 percent of white students graduated, while 64.2 percent of Hispanic students received diplomas.

The “graduation gap” has also steadily increased over the four most recent years surveyed: The gap between white and Hispanic graduation rates grew from an 11.8 percent difference in 2000-2001 school year to a 21 percent difference in the 2003-2004 school year.

At Grand Junction High School, the graduation gap for the class of 2004 was the greatest among district high schools, with nearly 90 percent of white students graduating and 57.1 percent of Hispanic students graduating.

Group targets class gap

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