Storm Evacuees Gained in Texas Schools, Study Says
Gulf Coast students who have remained in Texas public schools since fleeing Hurricane Katrina in 2005 have made steady academic gains and now surpass some of their Texas peers on exams in reading and math, according to a study by the state education agency.
Between spring 2006 and spring 2009, students displaced by the hurricane steadily improved their reading and mathematics scores on the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills, or TAKS. The study, conducted by Texas Education Agency officials and released April 6, found that students who were forced to relocate because of the August 2005 storm performed better than other Texas students who were most similar to them based on demographic and economic indicators, as well as on performance on 2006 state exams.
The study also found that the displaced students were, in many cases, performing as well as—or, in some cases, slightly better than—all students in Texas by their fourth year of enrollment in the state’s public schools. In math, the relocated students had not caught up to the performance of all Texas students, but they made strides in closing a gap in the 5th grade that was as high as 20 percentage points to one that is now about 6 percentage points, according...
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