KANSAS CITY

Citywide Education Progress Report

Key Takeaways: Student and School Outcomes

Between 2011-12 and 2014-15, the graduation rate across Kansas City remained essentially flat relative to the state. Between 2010-11 to 2015-16, citywide proficiency rates on state assessments did not improve relative to the state overall, and access to top-scoring schools in the city remains uneven.

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Is the education system continuously improving?

► The city’s graduation rate remained flat relative to the state, and still lags behind the state’s rates.

Data: Percent of first-time 9th grade students graduating in four years, citywide and statewide.
Source: EDFacts Initiative, U.S. Department of Education, Assessment and Adjusted Cohort Graduation Rates Data, 2011-12 to 2014-15.


► Between 2009-10 and 2015-16, the city’s math proficiency rate trends mirrored the state’s.

Data: The city’s estimated gains in proficiency rates across elementary and middle schools, standardized at the state level and controlling for student demographics.
Source: Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, 2009-10 to 2015-16.


► Between 2009-10 and 2015-16, the city’s reading proficiency rate trends mirrored the state’s.

Data: The city’s estimated gains in proficiency rates across elementary and middle schools, standardized at the state level and controlling for student demographics.
Source: Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, 2009-10 to 2015-16.


Do students have access to a high-quality education?

► The Education Equality Index (EEI) identifies how low-income students are performing in cities and schools across the country. See this interactive tool to explore individual school performance.

Data: The Education Equality Index (EEI) was supplied by Education Cities and GreatSchools. See their site for more detail.
Sources: Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, 2010-11 to 2014-15; National Assessment of Educational Progress, 2010-11 to 2014-15.


In 2014-15, 26% of students enrolled in the city’s top-scoring schools. Black and Hispanic students enrolled in top-scoring schools at lower rates than they enrolled in medium- and low-scoring schools. White students enrolled in top-scoring schools at higher rates.

Data: This figure shows whether students are equitably enrolled in the city’s top 20% performing schools, based on student proficiency in state reading assessments. Within a single student sub-group, we identify what percent is enrolled in top-, middle-, and low-performing schools. If the share of students enrolled in top-scoring schools citywide and the share of a particular sub-group are similar, this means that the subgroup is equally distributed across low-, middle-, and top-scoring schools.
Source: Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, 2009-10 to 2015-16.


► In 2013-14, black students were enrolled in advanced math coursework at a slightly lower rate than the high school population.

Data: Enrollment of students in math courses above Algebra II. Rates calculated by dividing the number of students enrolled in advanced math by the number of students in the school. Sub-group rates determined at the school level.

Source: U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights, Civil Rights Data Collection 2013-2014.


Data & Scoring

Where did we get this data?

► Publicly available state and federal data, making our results comparable and reproducible.

► The most up-to-date data available for all 18 cities at the time of our data collection. See Methodology & Resources for more information.

What makes the data citywide?

► We include all charter and district schools within the municipal boundary of a city.

► In Houston, Indianapolis, Memphis, New Orleans, and San Antonio we use school data from multiple districts within the municipal boundary.

Background

About Kansas City

After many years of decline, enrollment across Kansas City is starting to increase and Kansas City Public Schools (KCPS) received provisional accreditation in 2016. KCPS narrowly missed achieving full accreditation in 2017. KCPS’ current superintendent took office in July 2016 with the support of education leaders across the city. Some of the city’s charter schools rank among the highest in the state. The city has many nonprofits and foundations focused on improving school quality and families’ access to good schools, but these organizations don’t have a common vision or shared set of goals to work toward together.

School Choice in the City

No matter what school they are zoned to, families can enroll in charter schools or district Signature Schools—specialized schools with enrollment requirements.

Governance Model

The Kansas City Board of Education oversees KCPS district schools. The Missouri State Board of Education is the sole authorizer of charter schools, but accountability and oversight for Kansas City charter schools resides with five local sponsors.

2017 District and Charter Student Body

Enrollment: 24,740 students
Race and ethnicity: 57% black, 28% Hispanic, 9% white, 6% other
Low-income: 89% free and reduced-price lunch

2017 School Composition 

Note: Enrollment data for KCPS and charter schools. Demographics data for KCPS schools only.
Source: Kansas City Public Schools, 2017.
School data from researcher analysis of public records, 2016-17.

The Center on Reinventing Public Education is a research and policy analysis center at the University of Washington Bothell developing systemwide solutions for K–12 public education. Questions? Email crpe@uw.edu.