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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.

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Westlake High School

4100 WESTBANK DR, AUSTIN, TEXAS, 78746 | Grades 9-12

Districts with 3,000 or more students
Students Total Teachers Inexp. Teachers AP Courses
This School
2,480
177
14% 30
District 7,515 558 11% 30
State 4.01M 269,017 14% 15
 
State Average
 
District Average

Percentage of relevant students who...

Get Free/Reduced Price Lunch

48%
3%

3%

Take at Least One AP Course

20%
54%

54%

AP Pass Rate

48%
74%

74%

Take Advanced Math

10%
21%

21%

Are in a Gifted/Talented Program

8%
13%

12%

Take Chemistry

26%
30%

30%

Take Physics

14%
27%

27%

Participate in sports

32%
0.0%

19%

Are

0%
0%

1% Am Indian
4%
10%

8% Asian
15%
1%

1% Black
50%
10%

10% Hispanic
29%
75%

77% White

Westlake High School, part of the Eanes ISD, is located in Austin, Texas. The school reports an enrollment number of 2,480 students in grades nine through 12, and it has 177 teachers on staff.

Westlake High School is below the state average and on par with the district average for the percentage of its students who are eligible for free or reduced-price lunches. On average, 48 percent of students in Texas are eligible for free or reduced-price lunch programs, while 3 percent of Westlake High School students are eligible. At the district level, 3 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.

Westlake High School offers 30 AP courses, and 54 percent of students participate in those classes.

The school's pass rate for AP exams matches the district's, each of which is 74 percent.

A school's AP pass rate is determined by the number of students who both sat for AP exams and passed some or all of those exams.

Westlake High School has an enrollment rate of 21 percent for math classes, and 30 percent of students take chemistry. The enrollment rate for physics at the school is 27 percent, and the gifted and talented program has a participation rate of 12 percent.

North Forest High School, in Houston, Texas, is a higher-poverty school than Westlake High School, with 100 percent of its students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch. The school offers 13 AP courses, and 14 percent of students are enrolled in those courses.

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