Chemistry enrollment rates in Florida’s school districts and socioeconomic status: a summary

It was only recently that Orange County Public Schools Secondary Science Senior Administrator Rebecca Ray pointed out to me that chemistry enrollments are in decline.  I’d been so fixated on physics that I was surprised to learn that in Florida high school chemistry enrollments are declining more quickly than physics enrollments.

The plots below show where high school chemistry stands in Florida’s school districts as of Fall 2017.  The state’s leaders in chemistry enrollment rate are the usual suspects, with Seminole County on top.  The plot of chemistry enrollment rate vs. free and reduced-price eligibility rate may show a little stronger correlation than the physics plot, but I haven’t actually done the calculation so perhaps my eyes are fooling me.

But as in the case of physics, decisions made by adults have a strong impact on how many students take chemistry in Florida’s high schools.

The data are available on the FLDOE web site, which really is an amazing resource.

chem rate vs frl


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