Group Wants to Close Achievement Gap for Black Students

ST. PETERSBURG -

The group cites statistics from the Florida Department of Education showing that only about 30 percent of black students are scoring at minimum proficiency levels in reading and math

That's compared with about 70 percent for whites.

Co-chairwoman Gypsy Gallardo, says the group is demanding that the school system to comply with a six-year-old federal court order that the board address the disparity in achievement.

GALLARDO: I think it's time for the Pinellas County School board to, quite clearly, simply, obey the court order.

The School Board maintains that it is working to close the achievement gap. On Thursday, the NAACP Legal Defense Fund will begin a court-ordered mediation process with the school system. A process those in the coalition say they'll be closely watching.

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