The Education Achievement Gap
Education has largely been termed “the great equalizer,” but increasingly different communities are providing vastly divergent educational experiences for their students. Whether determined by race, gender, and/or socioeconomic status, various gaps remain in providing quality, accessible education. Fifty years ago, the black-white achievement gap was 1.5 times larger than the income gap; today, the the income gap exceeds the black-white achievement gap by nearly two times. This disparity has ballooned so much that the gap between low and high income (10th and 90th percentile income families, respectively) is about 30 to 40 percent larger for children born in 2001 than it was for children born in 1976.
Schools are also increasingly segregated: only 17.1 percent of white students attend a school where minorities make up at least half of students and over 75 percent of Hispanic and African-American students attend majority-minority schools. Simultaneously, U.S. public schools are more diverse than ever and for the first time in history, students of color outnumber white students in our nation’s public schools.
Given this national context, where is Ohio on the achievement gap continuum? Where do we go from here? This is the second youth forum of the year, featuring a panel discussion on the education achievement gap.
George Golden, Program Director, Closing the Achievement Gap (CTAG), Cleveland Metropolitan School District
Gregory C. Hutchings, Jr., Ed.D., Superintendent of Shaker Heights City School District
Cathy Whitehouse, Ph.D., Principal, The Intergenerational Schools K-8
This conversation is moderated by Youth Forum Council member Benjamin Schuster.