Achievement Gaps

Editor’s Note

Articles on this page examine ways that educators are addressing well-known, persistent achievement gaps between subgroups of students in the U.S. by race, ethnicity and socio-economic status. Included in this topic are articles about research into the underlying causes of achievement gaps and ways that differences in background and culture can affect student performance in school.

The Poverty Gap

Schools grapple with a growing population of poor children

David Kopperud was acting principal at a West Sacramento, Calif., elementary school when one of his first-graders stopped showing up. The child was so chronically absent that Kopperud went to see the child’s mother. What he learned has stayed with him since.Continue

College and Career Readiness

A Matter of One Goal or Two?

The Common Core State Standards released this month are meant to make all students “college or career ready” by the end of high school. But as they try to determine the best way to prepare students to meet this goal, policy makers and researchers are struggling with the question of overlap: Just how similar are the skills needed to succeed in college and the skills needed to succeed in a career that does not require a college degree? And can the two sets of skills be taught together? Continue

Scenes from the School Turnaround Movement

Passion, frustration, mid-course corrections mark rapid reforms

Last fall, when I set out to write a journalistic book about schools going from bad to great (and fast), the plan was to report on what was working in school turnaround. But it quickly became obvious that such information did not exist in definitive form. Instead, I stepped into a process that—while energetic and intense—is still being figured out. Continue

Closing the Gap One School at a Time

Teachers and administrators are becoming researchers as they work to narrow the black/white achievement gap in schools

How Racial Identity Affects School Performance

A Harvard professor connects research on race and schooling to his experiences as a student and father

Transition Programs for Retained Students

Segregation or Salvation?

Latino Achievement

How to Close the Gap

Out-of-School Programs Boost Achievement, Study Finds

Beyond the Gap

What educators and researchers are learning from high-achieving African American and Latino students

Bridging the PreK–Elementary Divide

Concerns about early achievement gaps prompt programs that link prekindergarten with elementary school

From Literacy to Learning

An interview with Catherine Snow on vocabulary, comprehension, and the achievement gap

The School Readiness Gap

Prekindergarten—not just preschool—may be the key to narrowing disparities in achievement by race, ethnicity, and income

Recent Research on the Achievement Gap

An interview with Ronald Ferguson on how lifestyle factors and classroom culture affect black-white differences

Related Books

Toward Excellence with Equity
So Much Reform, So Little Change
Leading for Equity
Bringing School Reform to Scale
Narrowing the Achievement Gap