Daily Howler takes on this NY Times article. And, in my opinion, completely bungles it. Pretty ironic for calling everyone who disagrees with him illiterate.
I'm not sure where exactly he gets his numbers, but the page he links to, does allow us to go to this report. [pdf]
This report tells us that contrary to DH's claim that 76-78% of the state's African American population is performing at grade level, the actual number is 67.2%. (p. 12 & 13) And, starting at page 54, the report shows that for every grade level except grade 5, less than 70% of the state's African American population is performing at grade level. Page 107 shows us that only 65.8% of the black students are performing at grade level for reading.
At some point in the recent past, Bob Somerby has gone off the rails, attacking everyone who writes anything slightly outside his worldview. That's a tragedy. Bring it back, Bob. Take a deep breath and calm down.
For example, maybe if multiple news sources look at the same data and get a different conclusion than you do, it might be you who has the interpretation wrong. Just because you're paranoid doesn't mean they really are out to get you!