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Is Your State Providing Equal Access to Education?

ProPublica analyzed federal education data from the 2009-2010 school year to examine whether states provide high-poverty schools equal access to advanced courses and special programs that researchers say will help them later in life. This is the first nationwide picture of exactly which courses are being taken at which schools and districts across the country. More than three-quarters of all public school children are represented. Read our story and our methodology.

Find a school

Wicksburg High School

1172 S STATE HIGHWAY 123, NEWTON, ALA., 36352 | Grades PreK-12

Districts with 3,000 or more students
Students Total Teachers Inexp. Teachers AP Courses
This School
915
53
11% N/A
District 6,350 384 6% 0
State 611K 39,097 9% 6
 
State Average
 
District Average

Percentage of relevant students who...

Get Free/Reduced Price Lunch

50%
54%

35%

Take Advanced Math

15%
7%

3%

Are in a Gifted/Talented Program

9%
7%

8%

Take Chemistry

14%
4%

3%

Take Physics

3%
4%

2%

Participate in sports

31%
0.0%

20%

Are

1%
0%

0% Am Indian
1%
0%

0% Asian
34%
17%

5% Black
4%
3%

3% Hispanic
59%
80%

92% White

Wicksburg High School, part of the Houston County district, is located in Newton, Alabama. The school reports an enrollment number of 915 students in grades pre-kindergarten through 12, and it has 53 teachers on staff.

Wicksburg High School is below both the state and district averages in terms of the percentage of its students who are eligible for free or reduced-price lunches. On average, 50 percent of students in Alabama are eligible for free or reduced-price lunch programs, while 35 percent of Wicksburg High School students are eligible. At the district level, 54 percent are eligible.

ProPublica's analysis found that all too often, states and schools provide poor students fewer educational programs like Advanced Placement, gifted and talented programs, and advanced math and science classes. Studies have linked participation in these programs with better outcomes later in life. Our analysis uses free and reduced-price lunch to estimate poverty at schools. We based our findings on the most comprehensive data set of access to advanced classes and special programs in U.S. public schools — known as the Civil Rights Data Set— released by the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights.

Wicksburg High School's enrollment rates in chemistry, physics and advanced math subject areas are 3 percent, 2 percent and 3 percent, respectively. Gifted and talented at the school has an enrollment rate of 8 percent.

Gaylesville High School, in Gaylesville, Ala., is a higher-poverty school than Wicksburg High School, with 68 percent of its students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch. The school enrolls 1 percent of students in its gifted and talented program.

These data points were reported by schools and districts to the Office for Civil Rights. For more information about the data, see our full methodology.

— Generated by Narrative Science