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For the 2020-21 school year, no students out of 32 tested at the Milwaukee Public School’s Westside Academy scored “proficient” in math, according to data from the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction. The majority scored “below basic” — the lowest rank. However, the state notes that the 2020-21 school year data should be used with caution due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which caused low participation rates. 

Combining data from 2018-2021, 3% of Westside Academy students scored “proficient” in math. Over 99% of Westside Academy students are economically disadvantaged, which often correlates with lower academic achievement. The Department of Public Instruction says 99% of K-5 schools in Wisconsin scored better than Westside Academy in English and math. 

Statewide, test scores in math have dropped since the onset of the pandemic. In the spring 2022 Forward exams, 39% of Wisconsin students tested proficient or higher in math. About 43% scored proficient or higher in 2019, with a similar drop in English proficiency. 


Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Fewer than half of Wisconsin students were proficient in math, language, according to 2022 standardized tests

Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction: Westside Academy Report Card

US News & World Report: Westside Academy

The Conversation: Students’ test scores tell us more about the community they live in than what they know

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Erin Gretzinger joined Wisconsin Watch as a reporting intern in May 2022. She is a journalism and French major at UW-Madison and will graduate in spring 2023. Erin previously worked for the Wisconsin State Journal as a reporting intern and served as the 2021-22 editor-in-chief at The Badger Herald. She is a recipient of the Jon Wolman Scholarship, the Sigrid Schultz Scholarship and the Joseph Sicherman Award Fund for her academic and reporting work.