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The Academic Achievement Gap Between The Rich And Poor Is Double The Gap Between Whites And Blacks

A new report from Stanford University’s Center for Education Policy Analysis shows yet another way that America’s rising income inequality harms society.

The report finds that the academic achievement gap — the gap in academic performance among students — is actually almost twice as wide between students from poor families and students from wealthy families as it is between black students and white students.

Not only does researcher Sean Reardon, who authored the report, find that the achievement gap between the rich and poor is far greater than whites and blacks, but he shows that this is actually a reversal from 50 years ago, where the racial gap was much larger than the income gap:

First, the income achievement gap (defined here as the income difference between a child from a family at the 90th percentile of the family income distribution and a child from a family at the 10th percentile) is now nearly twice as large as the black-white achievement gap. Fifty years ago, in contrast, the black-white gap was one and a half to two times as large as the income gap.

Reardon also concluded that “Family income is now nearly as strong as parental education in predicting children’s achievement.” This groundbreaking research is more evidence that America is devolving into a rigid, class-based society where the 99 Percent continue to struggle to get by as a small aristocracy rises. (HT: @dianeravitch)