LeBron’s ‘I Promise’ School Posts Shockingly Poor Test Results

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It might be time to take a good look at LeBron James’ school.

In 2018, the NBA superstar and philanthropist helped open the I Promise School in Akron, Ohio, with the goal of educating and enriching the lives of at-risk children.

A noble cause — but it’s not working.

I Promise students are falling behind at an alarming rate.

“This fall’s class of eighth graders at the I Promise School hasn’t had a single student pass the state’s math test since the group was in the third grade,” the Akron Beacon Journal reported.

(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

And those students were not always struggling.

“Their first year in the school, when they were in the third grade, 17% of the class tested proficient in math,” the outlet reported. “The following year, there were no tests because of COVID, and ever since, they have not had one student pass the test.”

And on the English test this spring, only 8% of I Promise students tested proficient.

Sure, COVID lockdowns affected test scores for students across the board in the United States. But when you compare I Promise students to their peers, the results are alarming.

“Two of I Promise’s biggest subgroups, Black students and those with disabilities, are now testing in the bottom 5% in the state,” the Beacon Journal reported.

Because of the low test scores, the Ohio Department of Education will now intervene at the school.

I Promise School Relies on Public Funding

The I Promise School is supported by the LeBron James Family Foundation but receives the same government funding — local, state and federal — as any other public school would.

In fact, LeBron’s school costs district tax payers around $8 million each year.

“The (media) coverage made it look like the whole thing is his,” Akron Public Schools district spokesman Mark Williamson told the Cleveland Plain Dealer. “He did a lot, but taxpayers should know it’s their investment, too.”

(Photo by Allison Farrand/NBAE via Getty Images)

The school also provides students with free uniforms, free breakfast, lunch and snacks, free transportation within two miles, free bicycles and helmets and access to a food pantry for their family. 

Additionally, any student who graduates will have their college tuition guaranteed by the University of Akron.

Unfortunately, the results so far aren’t looking too “promising.”

Written by Amber Harding

Amber is a Midwestern transplant living in Murfreesboro, TN. She spends most of her time taking pictures of her dog, explaining why real-life situations are exactly like "this one time on South Park," and being disappointed by the Tennessee Volunteers.


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  1. With all this “free” stuff, how could this not be working? oh yeah…….that`s right. Weird also how the local newspaper outted LaFraud. They must still be bitter he took his talents elsewhere.

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