While all of Massachusetts' ten urban districts seem to be grappling to varying degrees with sub par mathematics test scores, this subject area is a particular concern for the Springfield Public School System.
In 2011, just 28% of students were proficient in math, a one point increase over the previous year. In terms of individual grade levels, 4th grade math proficiency rates have been declining since 2008 while 8th grade math proficiency rates have ranged from 8 - 16% over the last decade (2001 - 2011). Furthermore, there is an achievement gap in Springfield between certain related subgroups. For example, in 2011 Asian students had a 61% proficiency rate in math while Hispanic (22%), African American (26%) and white (44%) students posted much lower rates. Other achievement gaps existed between low income and non low income students (25% versus 44%) and Title I and non Title I students (28% vs. 2%); males and females both had a 28% proficiency rate in math. On a positive note, the percentage of students falling into the 'Warning/Failing' category has declined from 43% in 2008 to 38% in 2011. Because of the statistics regarding math achievement, one of Springfield's many district Strategic Priorities is to increase proficiency in mathematics in addition to other important subject areas.