Minneapolis Students Shockingly Lack Math Skills

A disturbing report on the lack of math proficiency in the Minneapolis Public School District and St. Paul Public School District in Minnesota found that at least 10 elementary and high schools did not have a single student achieve grade-level skills in math during the 2021-22 school year.

The Center of the American Experiment, which studies state public policies, issued a report showing that 19 state schools did not have a student proficient in math in the last school year.

Ten of them were in the Twin Cities.

Students took the 2022 Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment, which measures what they have learned in various subject areas.

The report’s author, Catrin Wigfall, noted that “as of the start of the 2022 school year, fewer than half of Minnesota students statewide are proficient in math (44.6%) and just under 50% can’t read at grade level.”

National assessment scores for reading and math, she observed, are at their lowest levels in 30 years.

Breaking down the 19 statewide schools, six were traditional public schools, two were online public high schools, and 11 were public charter schools. One of the traditional public schools had no students proficient at reading.

Wigfall said that proponents of the present system are likely to place blame on COVID-19, and school closures certainly did not enhance students’ educational experience.

However, she said that the downward trend in student achievement was present long before the pandemic.

Of course, the American Federation of Teachers clings to the narrative that lower scores are due to the coronavirus. President Randi Weingarten said in October that “everyone suffered in the pandemic, because of the pandemic.”

She added that “it was bad regardless of whether schools were remote or in person.” Weingarten said the current focus is assisting students to “recover and thrive.”

A pair of researchers, Ted Dabrowski and John Klingner noted in their analysis of Illinois school systems that a “sane world” would mean these failing institutions would be shut down. However, the opposite occurs in 2023.

As they explained, “the system thrives while students wither.” Millions in additional funds are poured into the failing schools, many times in a futile search for magical “equity” solutions. But the basics, including reading and math, fall by the wayside.