Created: 12/16/2013 5:11 PM
By: Erica Zucco, KOB Eyewitness News 4
Statewide standardized tests compare Albuquerque Public Schools with other New Mexico districts, but Superintendent Winston Brooks says that's like comparing apples with oranges.
"Urban districts are unique. We're not like the typical New Mexico school district," Brooks said.
So in 2011, APS started volunteering to give a test used in other urban school districts. It's called the Trial Urban District Assessment, and it's given to 4th and 8th graders.
While some statewide standardized tests show APS near the bottom of the list, the TUDA scores the district right in the middle on math and reading, compared with other urban districts like Houston and New York City.
"When you look at how we compare with our other urban brothers and sisters who have similar demographics, similar poverty, similar language challenges as we have - we're really doing quite well," Brooks said.
This week, APS gets scores back from the latest TUDA. They can't release the numbers until Wednesday, but they do know Albuquerque is doing even better, even after adding more special education and English Language Learning students to the testing pool.
"It was a deliberate decision, quite frankly. I think there are a lot of districts who want to hide behind kids who don't speak English and kids who are in special ed, but they are as much of our population as anyone else," Brooks said.