Why Has Closing the Achievement Gap Been Stagnant?

Carol’s Summary:

A report by the Education Testing Service shows that the achievement gap between black and white students, and efforts to narrow the gap have been stagnant for 20 years. The Educational Testing Service has examined the achievement gap and efforts to close it since 1910.

Some experts have developed a theory that standardized testing alone cannot account for the results of the study, and that social and environmental factors must also be taken into account. In order to close the achievement gap any further, it may be necessary to break the cycle of poverty first. However, the cycle of poverty is not only a result of the achievement gap, but also one of its main causes.

In order to further narrow the achievement gap, it will be necessary to provide equal opportunities for academic growth. Textbooks in poverty-stricken areas would need to be of the same quantity and quality as books for children in middle-class areas. Standardized testing results will have to take into account more than the scores alone but also the advantages and disadvantages, and individual needs of the schools and students.

Teachers who work in schools in impoverished areas will also need to be trained in such a way that they can identify and connect better with their students and the issues that students face both in and out of the classroom. LifeBound visits with teachers from schools in both middle-class areas and areas where people are disadvantaged, and we coach them with our books and curriculum so they can collaborate and work with all students, regardless of their background. To learn more, visit www.lifebound.com or e-mail contact@lifebound.com


Report: When/why progress in closing achievement gap stalled

Progress seen over several decades in narrowing the educational achievement gap between black and white students has remained stalled for 20 years, according to data analyzed in a new report.

Called “The Black-White Achievement Gap: When Progress Stopped,” the report by the Educational Testing Service examines periods of progress and stagnation since 1910 in closing the achievement gap.

To read the full article: www.washingtonpost.com

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