Thursday, October 02, 2008

Needy Students Closing Test Gap Under 'No Child' -

Needy Students Closing Test Gap Under 'No Child' - Since enactment of the No Child Left Behind law, students from poor families in the Washington area have made major gains on reading and math tests and are starting to catch up with those from middle-class and affluent backgrounds, a Washington Post analysis shows.

The achievement gap between economic groups, long a major frustration for educators, has narrowed in the region's suburban schools since President Bush signed the law in 2002, according to Maryland and Virginia test data.

In Montgomery County, for instance, students in poverty have earned better scores on Maryland's reading test in each of the past five years, slicing in half the 28 percentage-point gulf that separated their pass rate from the county average. They also have made a major dent in the math gap. In Fairfax County, another suburban academic powerhouse, such students have slashed the achievement gaps on Virginia tests.