I spend a fair amount of time volunteering at a local elementary school. It is 100% free or reduced lunch. The students are about 100% African Americans although that statistic hides the deep diversity in that community. If there were other stats kept and published by schools about how “challenging” the school population is, this school would register as having a very tough time. Data could be on number of single parent homes, mobility of population, substance abuse issues, percent of adults with high school education completed etc etc.
However, they are doing well. They get the parents in for events for instance. One way is they focus on events where the kids perform and which are fun and which have food. They avoid long talks or any talks by admins which are unpleasant boring and slow.
Every year, they have a Halloween night (usually the week before) when the kids read aloud in the evening. They perform. The parents attend to hear the kids read. Sometimes to keep it fast and light, they have several kids read together. So four kids might read and perform together.
Every year there is a theme. Last year was Suess. This year was super heros. So the kids were reading books or in the upper fifth grades, essays written by the kids which featured a superhero theme. And some adults entertained dressed as super heros!
One question that obsesses me is to figure out what the US population of fifth graders is really like demographically, what are the statistics on the 5th grade US population in 2017-18 school year? The article that I cite and where I am trying to make pingbacks work has high level stats on the types of education they receive (homeschool, private, public, charter, virtual) but does not segment them by demographics, odds of success, state or otherwise. So much to figure out still!