Research shows that even at the top-rated schools in Texas, students of color are dramatically less likely to meet state academic standards than their White peers.
Even at the 4,500 traditional district schools with an "A" or "B" grade on the state's School Report Cards, there are shocking White-Black and White-Hispanic achievement gaps — from major metro areas to the suburbs.
But one strategy for addressing the problem is working: Public charter schools. Texas public charters are making dramatic progress closing these achievement gaps — and in some cases, even reversing them completely.
At Texas public charter schools, 37% of students are from the lowest-income neighborhoods of the state. That compares to an average of 24% for all public schools.
Why are so many of these students choosing charters? It's because public charter schools are helping meet their needs both inside and outside the classroom — from making sure children have healthy food and access to counseling, to small-group tutoring and other academic programs.
This makes a huge impact in the lives of students like Trayvion Newton, whose public charter school helped him go from homeless at age 7 to salutatorian of his graduating class!