Students in schools in the largest U.S. cities, many from low-income households, trail their peers elsewhere in the country in a test of science proficiency, according to a report released on Thursday, Reuters reports. Fourth- and eighth-graders in most of the 17 participating urban districts typically scored lower than the national average, the 2009 National Assessment of Educational Progress Science report showed.

“The results are shouting at us: Whatever we are doing in science education in these big city public schools, it isn’t working for the vast majority of our students,” said Alan Friedman, a member of the National Assessment Governing Board.

The analysis, also known as the Nation’s Report Card, Trial Urban District Assessment, tested between 900 and 2,200 students in each grade in school districts from San Diego to New York, including students in Atlanta and Boston public schools and the Los Angeles Unified School District…

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