by Genevieve Demos Kelley
Data from the 2014 Maryland Report Card suggest that Prince George’s County’s public charter schools and specialty programs do not fully reflect the demographics of the county school system, serving significantly fewer elementary school1 students who qualify for special services than the PGCPS average.
As of 2014, about 70% of Prince George’s County elementary school students qualified for free and reduced meals (FARMs). Students with limited English proficiency and students receiving special education made up 20.9% and 10.4%, respectively, of the county’s elementary school students. But the demographics of the county’s public charter schools and lottery specialty programs look substantially different.
In the charts below, both generated from the long table at the end of the post, each of PGCPS’s elementary and K-8 schools is represented by a single point. Points colored in red represent public charter schools, while points colored in black represent the lottery specialty programs: French immersion schools, Montessori schools, and schools for the performing arts2. In the first chart, points farther to the right indicate schools with a higher percentage of FARMs qualifying elementary students. Points closer to the top of the chart indicate a higher percentage of limited English proficient students.
Scatter plot showing the percentages of FARMs and LEP elementary students for all of PGCPS’s elementary and K-8 schools. Points in red represent charter schools; black represents specialty programs.