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The Nation's Report Card: 
Trial Urban District Assessment Mathematics 2009

Revised April 2010     Errata Notice

Author: National Center for Education Statistics

PDFDownload The Nation's Report Card: Trial Urban District Assessment Mathematics 2009 PDF for viewing and printing (11869K PDF)


Image of the cover of the 2009 Trial Urban District Assessment report.

Executive Summary

Scores for most districts higher than in 2003, but few make gains since 2007

Five districts score above large cities at both grades in 2009

A Closer Look at District Results Compared to Large Cities

Demographics vary among the nation, large cities, and individual urban districts

Results from the 2009 NAEP Trial Urban District Assessment (TUDA) make it possible to compare the performance of students in urban districts to public school students in the nation and large cities (i.e., cities with populations of 250,000 or more). Changes in students’ performance over time can also be seen for those districts that participated in earlier assessments.

Scores for most districts higher than in 2003, but few make gains since 2007

Representative samples of fourth- and eighth-grade public school students from 18 urban districts participated in the 2009 assessment. Eleven of the districts also participated in earlier assessment years, and seven districts participated for the first time in 2009. Between 1,800 and 4,300 fourth- and eighth-graders were assessed in each district.

In comparison to 2007, average mathematics scores for students in large cities increased in 2009 at both grades 4 and 8; however, only two participating districts at each grade showed gains. Scores were higher in 2009 for Boston and the District of Columbia at grade 4, and for Austin and San Diego at grade 8. No districts showed a decline in scores at either grade.

In comparison to 2003, scores for students in large cities were higher in 2009 at both grades 4 and 8. Increases in scores were also seen across most urban districts that participated in both years, except in Charlotte at grade 4 and in Cleveland at grades 4 and 8, where there were no significant changes.

Changes in 2009 mathematics scores since 2003 and 2007

 District Grade 4 Grade 8
Since
2003
Since
2007
Since
2003
Since
2007
Nation
5*
#
6*
2*
Large city
7*
2*
9*
3*
Atlanta
10*
2
15*
3
Austin
#
5*
Boston
16*
3*
18*
3
Charlotte
3
1
4*
#
Chicago
8*
2
9*
3
Cleveland
–1
–2
3
–1
District of Columbia (DCPS)
15*
6*
8*
3
Houston
9*
2
13*
3
Los Angeles
6*
1
13*
1
New York City
11*
1
7*
3
San Diego
10*
2
16*
8*

— District did not participate in 2003.
# Rounds to zero.
* Significant (p < .05) score change.
NOTE: Large city results are representative of all large cities in the nation and not just the participating urban districts. Beginning in 2009, if the results for charter schools are not included in the school district’s Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) report to the U.S. Department of Education under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, they are excluded from that district’s TUDA results. DCPS = District of Columbia Public Schools.

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Five districts score above large cities at both grades in 2009

Among the 18 urban districts that participated in the 2009 mathematics assessment, scores for both fourth- and eighth-graders in 10 districts were lower than the scores for public school students attending schools in large cities overall. Scores for five districts, however, were higher than the scores for fourth- and eighth-graders in large cities nationally.

In comparison to the average scores in 2009 for large cities in the nation,

higher at both grades

Austin, Boston, Charlotte, Houston, and San Diego had higher scores at both grades;

lower at both grades

Atlanta, Baltimore City, Chicago, Cleveland, Detroit, the District of Columbia, Fresno, Los Angeles, Milwaukee, and Philadelphia had lower scores at both grades;

not significantly different at both grades

scores in Jefferson County (Louisville, KY) were not significantly different at either grade; and

higher at grade 4 but not significanly different at grade 8

scores for Miami-Dade and New York City were higher at grade 4 and not significantly different at grade 8.

A U.S. map showing the participating trial urban districts.

NOTE: DCPS = District of Columbia Public Schools.

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A Closer Look at District Results Compared to Large Cities

Differences in overall average scores between participating districts and large cities were not always consistent across student groups. In Atlanta, for example, the overall average mathematics score was lower than the score for large cities at both grades. However, the score for Black students in the district (who comprise most of the student population) was not significantly different from the score for Black students in large cities at either grade.

Among the 10 districts where average scores at both grades were lower than the score for large cities, only Cleveland had lower scores for White, Black, and Hispanic students, and for students eligible for school lunch (an indicator of lower family income) in both grades.

Among the five districts where overall scores were higher than the score for large cities at both grades 4 and 8, only Charlotte and Houston also had higher scores for White, Black, and Hispanic students and for lower-income students in both grades.

District Grade 4 Student Groups
Overall
White
Black
Hispanic
Eligible for school lunch
Atlanta
lower
higher
no significant difference
no significant difference
lower
Austin
higher
higher
no significant difference
higher
higher
Baltimore City
lower
lower
no significant difference
reporting standards not met

lower

Boston
higher
no significant difference
higher
higher
higher
Charlotte
higher

higher

higher
higher
higher
Chicago
lower
lower
lower
no significant difference

lower

Cleveland
lower
lower
lower
lower
lower
Detroit
lower
reporting standards not met
lower
lower
lower
District of Columbia (DCPS)
lower
higher

lower

no significant difference
lower
Fresno
lower
lower
no significant difference
lower
lower
Houston
higher

higher

higher
higher
higher
Jefferson County (KY)

no significant difference

lower

no significant difference

no significant difference
lower
Los Angeles

lower

no significant difference
lower
lower
lower
Miami-Dade
higher
no significant difference
no significant difference
higher
higher
Milwaukee
lower
lower
lower
no significant difference
lower
New York City
higher
no significant difference 
higher
higher

higher

Philadelphia

lower

lower
no significant difference
lower

lower

San Diego
higher
no significant difference
no significant difference
no significant difference
no significant difference

District Grade 8 Student Groups
Overall
White
Black
Hispanic
Eligible for school lunch
Atlanta
lower
reporting standards not met
no significant difference
reporting standards not met
lower
Austin
higher
higher
higher

higher

higher

Baltimore City
lower

reporting standards not met

no significant difference

reporting standards not met

lower

Boston
higher
higher
higher

higher

higher

Charlotte
higher
higher
higher
higher
higher
Chicago
lower
no significant difference

no significant difference

no significant difference

no significant difference

Cleveland
lower
lower
lower
lower
lower
Detroit
lower
reporting standards not met
lower
no significant difference

lower

District of Columbia (DCPS)
lower
reporting standards not met
lower
no significant difference
lower
Fresno
lower
lower
lower
lower
lower
Houston
higher
higher
higher
higher

higher

Jefferson County (KY)
no significant difference
lower
lower
reporting standards not met
lower
Los Angeles
lower
no significant difference
lower
lower
lower
Miami-Dade
no significant difference

no significant difference

no significant difference
higher
higher
Milwaukee
lower
lower
lower
no significant difference
lower
New York City
no significant difference
no significant difference

higher

no significant difference
higher
Philadelphia
lower
no significant difference
no significant difference
no significant difference
no significant difference
San Diego
higher
higher
no significant difference

no significant difference

higher

higherHigher average score than large city.

lower Lower average score than large city.

no significant difference No significant difference between the district and large city.

reporting standards not met Reporting standards not met. Sample size insuffcient to permit a reliabel estimate.

DCPS = District of Columbia Public Schools.

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Demographics vary among the nation, large cities, and individual urban districts

When comparing the results for urban districts to results for the nation and large cities, it is important to consider how the demographics of the jurisdictions are different. Nationally, the percentages of White students at both grades 4 and 8 were higher than the combined percentages of Black and Hispanic students in 2009, while the opposite was true for large cities and for most participating urban districts.

Large cities and participating urban districts also differed from the nation in the proportion of students eligible for the National School Lunch Program. While the percentages of students eligible for free/reduced-price school lunch in the nation were 48 percent at grade 4 and 43 percent at grade 8, the percentages of eligible students in the districts ranged from 46 to 100 percent in 2009.

More detailed information about the demographic characteristics of fourth- and eighth-graders in the nation, large cities, and participating districts is included in the report.

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Download the complete report in a PDF file for viewing and printing:

PDFThe Nation's Report Card: Trial Urban District Assessment Mathematics 2009 report PDF (11869K PDF)

NCES 2010-452rev Ordering information


Suggested Citation
National Center for Education Statistics (2009). The Nation's Report Card: Trial Urban District Assessment Mathematics 2009  (NCES 2010–452rev). National Center for Education Statistics, Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education, Washington, D.C.

For more information, see the results of the 2009 Mathematics Trial Urban District assessment on the Nation's Report Card website.

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Last updated 26 April 2010 (RH)

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