Home » Editorial » Poor MPS test scores show leadership’s lack of commitment to students

 

“We exist to ensure that all students learn” is the mission of the Minneapolis Public Schools (MPS). Superintendent Bernadeia Johnson states on the MPS website that she believes “more strongly than ever that our top priorities lie in narrowing the achievement gap and offering all of our students a high-quality education that prepares them for college or a career.”

All of this sounds great, but by the time you get through reading this column you will realize that those are just empty words. In this column I will discuss the 2011-2012 MPS test results. These results have been swept under the rug by the so called “Leadership Council” and their representatives.

In 2010, when the NAACP called for parents to remove their kids from Minneapolis Public Schools some people thought that they were going overboard. The NAACP and the community thought that MPS was making some changes to remedy the environment of failure that was prevalent in our schools.

After looking at these test scores, nothing could be further from the truth. Let me first say that before looking at these test scores I fully expected that a significant number of kids were failing given factors such as very, very bad parenting, transient living situations, and again very, very bad parenting; but the number of children failing was far greater than what I expected.

I realize that the educating our children at times can be difficult and that raising people’s children is not the sole responsibility of the schools, but the results of MPS are completely unacceptable and downright immoral.

Well, enough of the soapbox — now, let’s look at the results. Let’s start with the babies, the elementary kids.

At Bethune, 122 African American kids were given the Minnesota Basic Skills Test (MBST) in math; 11 of them passed. At Hall, 150 African American children were given the test; 26 of them passed.

Bethune and Hall are both segregated schools, so lets look at Bryn Mawr. Where 98 African Americans were given the test, 18 passed. Thirty-one Whites were given the test; 27 of them passed.

At Bancroft, 31 Whites were given the test; eight passed. Sixty African Americans were given the test, and 12 passed. Twenty-five Native Americans were tested; four passed.

At Olson Lund Lower, 174 African Americans were given the test; 16 passed. Twenty-five Whites were tested; four passed. Now, let’s look at the test results for reading.

At Bethune, 123 African American kids were tested; 28 of them passed. At Hall, 149 African American children were given the test; 61 of them passed. At Bryn Mawr, where 94 African Americans were given the test, 31 passed; while 31 Whites were given the test and 27 of them passed.

At Bancroft, 27 Whites were given the test; 11 passed. Sixty-one African Americans were given the test; 21 passed. And of the 25 Native Americans tested, eight passed. At Olson Lund Upper, 176 African Americans were given the test; 76 passed. Of the 28 Whites tested, 11 passed. If you think these results are bad, wait until you get see the results at the high school.

At Edison High School, 103 11th grade African Americans were given the state graduation test; three of them passed. Twelve Asians were tested and one passed. Nine Whites were tested, and four passed; and 25 Hispanics were tested, and three passed.

At Henry, 84 African Americans were tested; 13 passed. One hundred fifteen Asians were tested; 31 passed. Twenty-seven Whites were tested, and 14 passed; and 11 Hispanics were tested, and three passed.

At North, 44 African Americans were tested — none passed. Seven Asians were tested; three passed.

At Roosevelt, 69 African Americans were tested; four passed. Ten Asians were tested; three passed. Fourteen Whites were tested and none passed; and 75 Hispanics were tested, and 10 passed.

At South, 113 African Americans were tested, and 12 passed; and 17 Asians were tested, and six passed. Two hundred and two Whites were tested, and 115 passed; and 43 Hispanics were tested, and eight passed.

At Southwest, 107 African Americans were tested, and 15 passed; 19 Asians were tested, and 13 passed; 224 Whites were tested, and 152 passed; and 36 Hispanics were tested, and 13 passed.

At Washburn, 47 African Americans were tested; seven passed. Eight Asians were tested, and three passed. Ninety-eight Whites were tested, and 43 passed; and 53 Hispanics were tested, and six passed.

As you can see, the results at the high schools are absolutely ridiculous.

The superintendent is up for a new contract, and those in the “Leadership Council” will advocate for her to get a new contract. When she first got hired she didn’t have a Ph.D., but she has one now. Congratulations. She made getting her Ph.D. a priority; maybe she should make the success of all of our students a priority.

These test results speak for themselves. MPS have dedicated staff. I wish I could say the same for the leadership. Send your kids to MPS, and get them an all-expense-paid vacation to 401 South 4th Avenue — the Hennepin County jail.

 

Booker T Hodges is the president of the Minneapolis NAACP. He welcomes reader responses to [email protected] 

 

 

 

 

3 Responses to “Poor MPS test scores show leadership’s lack of commitment to students”

  1. element of common sense December 3, 2012

    The leadership of the Minneapolis school district is undisciplined when they just gave the superintendent a three year contract making people hold their breath for common sense to prevail.

    Reply
  2. element of common sense December 3, 2012

    The forced justification of North High School still being open despite being less than 20% full that the leadership of the Minneapolis school district thinks there are too many businesses in the Block E building that have given up and making it seem that common sense doesn’t occur within a few years like the residents in Grand Forks, ND wanting to move to areas where it doesn’t flood to settle down within a few years after the 1997 flood debacle or the leadership thinks its too predictable for common sense to prevail and North High should be seized under eminent domain to put the school out of its misery. That’s why there are more laws in favor of eminant domain.

    Reply
  3. element of common sense January 11, 2013

    It is an insult for North High School to be open three years longer than you think like a blog saying about Paul McCartney not being inducted as an individual into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame five years after John Lennon in the 1990′s.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Tell us what you think! Leave a comment below.