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Illinois to Hold Students to Different Standards

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Under a dramatic new approach to rating public schools, Illinois students of different backgrounds no longer will be held to the same standards—with Latinos and blacks, low-income children, and other groups having lower targets than whites for passing state exams.

In reading, for example, 85 percent of white students in grades 3-8 will be expected to pass state tests by 2019, compared with about 73 percent for Latinos and 70 percent for black students.

The U.S. Department of Education approved the overhaul last month after granting Illinois a waiver from key provisions of the No Child Left Behind Act. But the new approach is troubling to civil rights activists, who are not convinced that districts will be held accountable for failing to educate minority students.

Vol. 33, Issue 32, Page 5

Published in Print: May 21, 2014, as Illinois to Hold Students to Different Standards
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