Grades four and five had the highest passing rate in math with 74 percent. In ninth grade, the passing rate dropped one point down to 43 percent. The science exam results improved in both fifth and tenth grade. This was the first year eighth graders took the test. 57 percent passed. HISD Superintendent Abe Saavedra says the district did see some improvement in the achievement gap between different groups.
"The gap between white students and Hispanics in reading and math closed at nearly every grade level. And the gap between white students and African American students improved in all but three grade levels in math."
Saavedra says more work remains to be done. He notes the improvements are coming at a time when the standards for passing continue to increase. As for the Katrina evacuees, the results continue to be poor. Ten percent of evacuee tenth graders passed the math exam. At the fifth grade level, 33 percent passed. Capella Tucker, Houston Public Radio News.