ProPublica

Journalism in the Public Interest

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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Houston Academy For International Studies

1810 STUART, HOUSTON, TEXAS, 77004 | Grades 9-12

Districts with 3,000 or more students
Students Total Teachers Inexp. Teachers AP Courses
This School
325
18
31% 8
District 193K 11,919 18% 11
State 4.01M 269,017 14% 15
 
State Average
 
District Average

Percentage of relevant students who...

Get Free/Reduced Price Lunch

48%
63%

61%

Take at Least One AP Course

20%
21%

23%

AP Pass Rate

48%
44%

10%

Take Advanced Math

10%
9%

6%

Are in a Gifted/Talented Program

8%
14%

14%

Take Chemistry

26%
25%

23%

Take Physics

14%
7%

6%

Are

0%
0%

0% Am Indian
4%
3%

0% Asian
15%
26%

43% Black
50%
62%

49% Hispanic
29%
8%

5% White

Houston Academy For International Studies, in Houston, Texas, is part of the Houston ISD. The school reports enrolling 325 students in grades nine through 12, and it has 18 teachers on staff.

Houston Academy For International Studies is above the state average but below the district average in terms of the percentage of students eligible for free or reduced-price lunches. On average, 48 percent of students in Texas are eligible for free or reduced-price lunch programs, whereas 61 percent of Houston Academy For International Studies students do. At the district level, 63 percent of students 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.

Houston Academy For International Studies offers eight AP courses, and 23 percent of students participate in those classes.

For AP tests, the school's pass rate is below the district average, with 10 percent of students passing some or all AP tests. Compare this to the district rate of 44 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.

Houston Academy For International Studies's enrollment rates in chemistry, physics and advanced math subject areas are 23 percent, 6 percent and 6 percent, respectively. Gifted and talented at the school has an enrollment rate of 14 percent.

Highland Park High School, a lower-poverty school than Houston Academy For International Studies, does not have any students who qualify for free or reduced-price lunch. The school enrolls 56 percent of its students in AP classes. It is located in Dallas, Texas.

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