While LeBron James didn’t have a successful NBA season, his school in Akron, Ohio is doing amazing things and showing great results.
The New York Times ran a long feature on the I Promise School. In this report card, one that is early in the institution’s lifespan has found a lot to praise for its academic progress.
READ MORE: Michelle and Barack Obama Commend LeBron James for Opening I Promise School
There are only 240 students in the inaugural 3rd and 4th grade classes at the Akron school — but numbers obtained by the NY Times show test scores in math and reading were up BIG after the first year.
LeBron James: “When we first started, people knew I was opening a school for kids. Now people are going to really understand the lack of education they had before they came to our school." https://t.co/o7tdyOWmKC
— The New York Times (@nytimes) April 12, 2019
In reading, the 3rd and 4th graders had initially scored in the lowest percentile– the 1%. But after a year, when the students took the district-wide exams, the 3rd graders JUMPED to the 9th percentile and the 4th graders moved to the 16th! Take a second and reflect on that– those are HUGE gains.
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James tells The Times, “These kids are doing an unbelievable job, better than we all expected. When we first started, people knew I was opening a school for kids. Now people are going to really understand the lack of education they had before they came to our school. People are going to finally understand what goes on behind our doors.”
The paper notes that the scores “reflect students’ performance on the Measures of Academic Progress assessment, a nationally recognized test administered by NWEA, an evaluation association. In reading, where both classes had scored in the lowest, or first, percentile, third-graders moved to the ninth percentile and fourth-graders to the 16th. In math, third-graders jumped from the lowest percentile to the 18th, while fourth-graders moved from the second percentile to the 30th.”
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The 90% of I Promise students who met their goals exceeded the 70% of students districtwide and scored in the 99th growth percentile of the evaluation association’s school norms, which the district said showed that students’ test scores increased at a higher rate than 99 out of 100 schools nationally.
In just one year, I Promise School is performing this well, so you can only imagine what the numbers will look like after year two.