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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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Toppenish High School

141 WARD ROAD, TOPPENISH, WASH., 98948 | Grades 9-12

Districts with 3,000 or more students
Students Total Teachers Inexp. Teachers AP Courses
This School
725
31
13% 4
District 3,245 157 11% 4
State 833K 42,424 7% 8
 
State Average
 
District Average

Percentage of relevant students who...

Get Free/Reduced Price Lunch

38%
88%

84%

Take at Least One AP Course

18%
10%

10%

AP Pass Rate

49%
0%

0%

Take Advanced Math

15%
12%

12%

Are in a Gifted/Talented Program

8%
4%

10%

Take Chemistry

14%
5%

5%

Take Physics

7%
1%

1%

Participate in sports

40%
0.0%

55%

Are

2%
14%

10% Am Indian
10%
0%

0% Asian
7%
0%

0% Black
16%
82%

85% Hispanic
64%
3%

5% White

Toppenish High School, in Toppenish, Washington, is part of the Toppenish School District. The school reports enrolling 725 students in grades nine through 12, and it has 31 teachers on staff.

Toppenish High School is above the state average but below the district average in terms of the percentage of its students who qualify for free or reduced-price lunches. On average, 38 percent of students in Washington qualify for free or reduced-price lunch programs, whereas 84 percent of Toppenish High School students do. At the district level, 88 percent of students qualify.

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.

Toppenish High School offers four AP courses, and 10 percent of students participate in those classes.

Toppenish High School has an enrollment rate of 12 percent for math classes, and 5 percent of students take chemistry. The enrollment rate for physics at the school is 1 percent, and the gifted and talented program has a participation rate of 10 percent.

Bainbridge High School, in Bainbridge Island, Washington, is a lower-poverty school than Toppenish High School, with 4 percent of its students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch. The school offers 10 AP courses, and 21 percent of students are enrolled in those classs.

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