GO Math!: DC Public Schools

At a glance

  • Demonstrates a Rationale
  • Program: Go Math!®
  • Subject: Math
  • Report Type: Efficacy Study
  • Grade Level: Elementary
  • Region: Southeast
  • District Urbanicity: Urban
  • District Size: Large
  • District: DC Public Schools, Washington, DC
  • Outcome Measure: District of Columbia Comprehensive Assessment System
  • Evaluation Period: 2013–2014
  • Study Conducted by: HMH Research

DC Public Schools is an urban school district in Washington, DC. The district includes 60 elementary schools and 26 secondary schools with a current enrollment of over 46,000 students in Grades Pre-K–12. The professional staff includes 3,500 teachers, with approximately 3,600 support personnel and administrators.

DC Public Schools is eligible for Title I assistance. Sixty-seven percent of the students are Black, and the remaining student body consists of students identified as Hispanic (17%), White (12%), or other (4%). Seventy-six percent of the students qualify for free/reduced-price lunch and 16% of the students have an Individualized Education Program (IEP).

District of Columbia Comprehensive Assessment System (DC-CAS) is taken by all public school students, Grades 3–8 and 10, in the spring. The test covers reading, mathematics, and science and is administered to students in Grades 5 and 8. The test measures how well students acquire the skills and knowledge described in the DC Content Standards.

At Grades 3–5, the math DC-CAS comprises multiple choice and open-ended items covering five domains: Number Sense and Operations; Patterns, Relations, and Algebra; Geometry; Measurement; and Data Analysis, Statistics, and Probability.

In DC, students’ test scores can be categorized into one of four levels of mastery including Level 1 (Below Basic), Level 2 (Basic), Level 3 (Proficient), and Level 4 (Advanced). Students scoring at the top two levels (Proficient and Advanced) are classified as excelling on the DC math standards.

To determine if HMH GO Math! had an impact on learning, students’ DC-CAS mathematics test scores from the spring of 2013, prior to using the program, and the spring of 2014, after one year of usage, were obtained for Grades 3, 4, and 5. These findings are presented in Figure 1.

5 4 Go Math Research Base Dc Graph Fig1 1
FIGURE 1. Percent of Students Proficient & Advanced

The comparison of achievement scores revealed that at all grade levels examined, the percentage of students scoring Proficient or Advanced was greater in 2014, after using GO Math!, than the previous year with an average gain of over 2%.

This one-year examination of the implementation of GO Math! © 2012 at DC Public Schools revealed that the program was associated with increased mathematics achievement.