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ERIC Number: ED529186
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 152
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1246-1185-3
A Penny and a Half and a Pool: Lead Poisoning and Its Impact on Academic Achievement
Gehrman, Matthew Paul
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Arizona State University
Lead is a neurotoxin that has been shown to have a long and lasting impact on the brains, bodies, and behaviors of those who are poisoned. It also has a greater presence in communities with high levels of poverty and minority populations. Compounded over time, the effects of lead poisoning, even at low levels of exposure, impact a child's readiness and ability to learn. To investigate the relationship between the risk of lead poisoning, school level academic achievement, and community demographics, three sets of data were combined. The Lead Poisoning Risk Index (LPRI), used to quantify the risk in each census tract of being poisoned by lead, standardized state assessment data for third grade reading and eighth grade math, and census 2000 demographic data were combined to provide information for all Arizona schools and census tracts. When achievement was analyzed at the school level using descriptive, bivariate correlation, and multivariate regression analyses, lead's impact practically disappeared, exposing the powerful effect of poverty and race on achievement. At a school in Arizona, the higher the percentage of students who are poor or Hispanic, African American or Native American, these analyses' predictive models suggest there will be a greater percentage of students who fail the third grade AIMS reading and eighth grade AIMS math tests. If better achievement results are to be realized, work must be done to mitigate the effects of poverty on the lives of students. In order to improve schools, there needs to be an accounting for the context within which schools operate and a focus on improving the neighborhoods and the quality of life for the families of students. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 3; Grade 8; Junior High Schools; Middle Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Arizona