Analysis: 91.5% of black Cook County Third Graders Failed State Math Exam in 2021
Analysis: 91.5% of black Cook County Third Graders Failed State Math Exam in 2021
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In Cook County, 91.5 percent of black third grade students failed the 2021 state math exam.

This means 91.5 percent of black third graders are not proficient at math, which is considered a core skill for later success in life. These students struggle with quickly adding and subtracting, multiplying one-digit numbers by multiple digit numbers, and fractions, according to the standards set by the state.

Results of state exams are graded in five levels proficiency, rather than a score from zero to 100. The worst level is “Did Not Meet,” followed by “Partially Met,” “Approached,” “Met,” and “Exceeded.” Data in this story was accrued by combining results from the first three levels of proficiency where students do not meet the expected math proficiency.

Numerous counties saw all black third grade students fail to reach an acceptable proficiency level in math. Counties include: Mason, Marshall, Fulton, Lawrence, Adams, and Lee County.

Illinois report card data showed there were dramatic declines in academic achievement since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

However, a Wirepoints investigation found the Illinois school system prioritizes social promotion of black students over their literacy.

“’Social promotion’ – pushing kids into the next grade regardless of ability – leaves unsuspecting Illinois parents believing their kids are being educated simply because they’re advancing,” wrote report authors Ted Dabrowski and John Klingner. “Social promotion in Illinois continues into high school. That’s when district officials tell parents what they want to hear – that their children have what they need to graduate.”

Wirepoints also cited “racial equity” programs that blame low black student scores on racism, calling schools “more obsessed with vague outcomes like equity and diversity than merit and competence.”

District information was gathered from the Illinois Report Card.


Math Scores of Cook County Black Third Grade Students
Chicago Heights School District 170 19 100
Willow Springs School District 108 12 100
Schiller Park School District 81 39 100
Argo Community High School District 217 10 100
ACE Amandla Charter School 56 99.9
West Northfield School District 31 87 97.7
Forest Park School District 91 40 97.5
Lincoln Elementary School District 156 33 97
Indian Springs School District 109 69 97
Thornton School District 154 108 96.4
Palatine Community Consolidated School District 15 19 94.8
Bloom Township High School District 206 38 94.7
LaGrange Highlands School District 106 16 93.8
Hoover-Schrum Memorial School District 157 16 93.8
Midlothian School District 143 61 93.4
Lyons Township High School District 204 92 92.3
Chicago Public School District 299 72 91.7
Brookwood School District 167 72 90.3
Township High School District 214 70 90
Alsip-Hazelgreen-Oaklawn School District 126 35 88.6
Brookfield LaGrange Park School District 95 46 87
General George Patton School District 133 57 86
Ford Heights School District 169 14 85.7
Central Stickney School District 110 20 85
Sunnybrook School District 171 70 84.3
Kirby School District 140 43 83.7
Flossmoor School District 161 65 81.6
Oak Lawn Community High School District 229 56 80.3
River Forest School District 90 10 80
Forest Ridge School District 142 12 75

This article was originally posted by North Cook News on August 1, 2022.

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