Measuring Up: Educational Improvement and Opportunity in 50 Cities

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Author(s):  The University of Washington’s Center on Reinventing Public Education (CRPE)

  • Michael DeArmond
  • Patrick Denice
  • Betheny Gross
  • Jose Hernandez
  • Ashley Jochim
  • Robin Lake

Published: Oct 7, 2015

Report Intro/Brief:
"This report provides a new resource for understanding the state of urban public schools in the U.S. Geared specifically toward city leaders who want to evaluate how well traditional district and charter schools are serving all their city’s children and how their schools compare to those in other cities, the report measures outcomes for all public schools, based on test scores and non-test indicators, in 50 mid- and large-sized cities. We selected the cities based on their size and because they reflect the complexity of urban public education today, where a single school district is often no longer the only education game in town.

Our research uses nine indicators to examine how well each city’s schools are doing overall and how well they are doing for students from low-income households and students of color. Our analysis shows some brights spots, but performance in most cities is flat. Poor and minority students face staggering inequities, and the picture is especially bleak for black students. These problems call for big changes, not incremental tweaks, and highlight the need to identify and learn from cities that are showing that things can get better."