Minnesota 9th graders showed little change this year on a required statewide writing test.
The state Education Department has released district and school results for this year's GRAD writing test, which is given starting in 9th grade. This year, 89 percent of all 9th grade students passed — a figure mostly unchanged from recent years.
But fewer schools saw 100 percent of their students pass this year — 15 in all, down from 32 last year. Twenty-four schools had passing rates below 50 percent, up from 18 last year.
The GRAD test is one all Minnesota students must pass in writing and reading in order to graduate high school.
The test is also just the latest to highlight Minnesota's achievement gap. While 93 percent of white students passed the test, only 75 percent of black and 77 percent of Hispanic students did.