NJEA's Achievement Gap "Straw Man" Between Rich And Poor Students Has “Grown Substantially”

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NJEA President Barbara Keshishian Called The Achievement Gap A “Classic Straw Man.” “The Christie administration’s primary rationale for education reform – the so-called ‘achievement gap’ between white and black students in the state’s urban districts – is ‘a classic straw man,’ NJEA President Barbara Keshishian said today.” (New Jersey Education Association, “Christie’s ‘Straw Man’ For Reform,” Press Release, 12/1/11)
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Education Gap Grows Between Rich and Poor, Studies Say

Sabrina Tavernise
February 10, 2012
The New York Times


“Education was historically considered a great equalizer in American society, capable of lifting less advantaged children and improving their chances for success as adults. But a body of recently published scholarship suggests that the achievement gap between rich and poor children is widening, a development that threatens to dilute education’s leveling effects.

“It is a well-known fact that children from affluent families tend to do better in school. Yet the income divide has received far less attention from policy makers and government officials than gaps in student accomplishment by race.

“Now, in analyses of long-term data published in recent months, researchers are finding that while the achievement gap between white and black students has narrowed significantly over the past few decades, the gap between rich and poor students has grown substantially during the same period.

“’We have moved from a society in the 1950s and 1960s, in which race was more consequential than family income, to one today in which family income appears more determinative of educational success than race,’ said Sean F. Reardon, a Stanford University sociologist. Professor Reardon is the author of a study that found that the gap in standardized test scores between affluent and low-income students had grown by about 40 percent since the 1960s, and is now double the testing gap between blacks and whites …”

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