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Pencils Down! Third-World Math Scores in Chicago

A new study comparing US urban school districts and foreign countries found that math scores in Chicago are on par with other countries — Third World countries. Only 13 percent of eighth graders in the city's public schools are proficient in math.

One education expert thinks the scores make a persuasive case against creating magnet schools for gifted students, arguing that students need the few top students as role models, and examples of "normal kids who perform well."

Thankfully Chicago is instituting a Math and Science Initiative to help boost learning. Does the state of American schools have to fall to third world achievement levels before people get serious about public education?

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