Uniqueness
December 23, 2010, 04:20 PM
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Jay Matthews delivers breathtaking news in the Washington Post: acceptance rates to get into Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, perhaps the hardest public science school in the country (average exiting SAT score of 2220 out of 2400):
Looking at applicants of different ethnicities, the crux of Meikle's question, 184 African Americans applied and four (2.3 percent of those applying) were admitted. With Hispanics, the figures were 225 applied and 13 (5.8 percent) admitted. In the multiracial category, 190 applied and 21 (11 percent) were admitted.

The number of whites (1,277) and Asians (1,243) who applied was close, but their admission rates were not. Of whites, 166 (13 percent) were admitted and 276 Asians (22.2 percent) were admitted.

So, Asians first, whites second, Hispanics third, blacks fourth. What an astonishing result! Who has ever seen that rank ordering before in any competition involving test scores and grades? It's an anomaly!

Of course, no attempt is made to compare this to similar situations, where similar results are achieved. We're only supposed to to talk about Thomas Jefferson HS. What is it about TJHS that leads to such remarkable results? We're simply not supposed to notice any similst pattern elsewhere, and thus preserve our intellectual virginity for thinking about the Virginia school. People who have actually learned things from general patterns are considered unwanted gatecrashers.