Tag Archives: Social Class

Report: STEM attrition in college often occurs because students not prepared for the challenge

28 Nov

Moi wrote in The role economic class plays in college success: Moi wrote in Race, class, and education in America:
Many educators have long recognized that the impact of social class affects both education achievement and life chances after completion of education. There are two impacts from diversity, one is to broaden the life experience of the privileged and to raise the expectations of the disadvantaged. Social class matters in not only other societies, but this one as well.
A few years back, the New York Times did a series about social class in America. That series is still relevant. Janny Scott and David Leonhardt’s overview, Shadowy Lines That Still Divide describes the challenges faced by schools trying to overcome the disparity in education. The complete series can be found at Social Class https://drwilda.com/2011/11/07/race-class-and-education-in-america/

Jason DeParle reported in the New York Times article, For Poor Strivers, Leap to College Often Ends in a Hard Fall:

“Everyone wants to think of education as an equalizer — the place where upward mobility gets started,” said Greg J. Duncan, an economist at the University of California, Irvine. “But on virtually every measure we have, the gaps between high- and low-income kids are widening. It’s very disheartening.”
The growing role of class in academic success has taken experts by surprise since it follows decades of equal opportunity efforts and counters racial trends, where differences have narrowed. It adds to fears over recent evidence suggesting that low-income Americans have lower chances of upward mobility than counterparts in Canada and Western Europe.
Thirty years ago, there was a 31 percentage point difference between the share of prosperous and poor Americans who earned bachelor’s degrees, according to Martha J. Bailey and Susan M. Dynarski of the University of Michigan. Now the gap is 45 points.
While both groups improved their odds of finishing college, the affluent improved much more, widening their sizable lead.
Likely reasons include soaring incomes at the top and changes in family structure, which have left fewer low-income students with the support of two-parent homes. Neighborhoods have grown more segregated by class, leaving lower-income students increasingly concentrated in lower-quality schools. And even after accounting for financial aid, the costs of attending a public university have risen 60 percent in the past two decades. Many low-income students, feeling the need to help out at home, are deterred by the thought of years of lost wages and piles of debt….
Income has always shaped academic success, but its importance is growing. Professor Reardon, the Stanford sociologist, examined a dozen reading and math tests dating back 25 years and found that the gap in scores of high- and low-income students has grown by 40 percent, even as the difference between blacks and whites has narrowed.
While race once predicted scores more than class, the opposite now holds. By eighth grade, white students surpass blacks by an average of three grade levels, while upper-income students are four grades ahead of low-income counterparts. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/23/education/poor-students-struggle-as-class-plays-a-greater-role-in-success.html?hpw&_r=0

Social class and background may not only affect an individual student’s choice of major, but their completion of college in that major.

Nick De Santis reported in the Chronicle of Higher Education article, Report Examines College Students’ Attrition From STEM Majors:

Twenty-eight percent of bachelor’s-degree students who began their postsecondary education in the 2003-4 academic year chose a major in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics at some point within six years, but 48 percent of students who entered those fields during that period had left them by the spring of 2009, according to a report released on Tuesday by the National Center for Education Statistics, the U.S. Education Department’s statistical arm.
The report, which addresses attrition from the so-called STEM fields, also includes information on students pursuing associate degrees. It says that 20 percent of such students had chosen a STEM major within that six-year period and notes that 69 percent of them had left the STEM fields by the spring of 2009.
Of the students who left STEM fields, the report says, roughly half switched their major to a non-STEM field, and the rest left college without earning a degree or certificate. The report notes that fields such as the humanities and education experienced higher levels of attrition than did the STEM disciplines.
The report identifies several factors associated with a higher probability of switching out of STEM majors, such as taking lighter STEM course loads or less-challenging math classes in the first year, and earning lower grades in STEM courses than in others….
http://chronicle.com/blogs/ticker/report-examines-college-students-attrition-from-stem-majors/69705?cid=pm&utm_source=pm&utm_medium=en

Citation:

Title: STEM Attrition: College Students’ Paths Into and Out of STEM Fields
Description: This Statistical Analysis Report presents the most recent national statistics on beginning bachelor’s and associate’s degree students’ entrance into, and attrition from, STEM fields. Using recent transcript data, it provides a first look at STEM coursetaking and examines how participation and performance in undergraduate STEM coursework, along with other factors, are associated with STEM attrition. The study is based on data from the 2004/09 Beginning Postsecondary Students Longitudinal Study (BPS:04/09) and the associated 2009 Postsecondary Education Transcript Study (PETS:09).

ERRATA: A typographical error has been found on page vi of the report’s Executive Summary. The affected line should read:

“Bachelor’s degree STEM entrants who were male or who came from low-income backgrounds had a higher probability of leaving STEM by dropping out of college than their peers who were female or came from high-income backgrounds, net of other factors.”

A revised version of the report will be posted when available under the publication number 2014001rev.
Online Availability: • Download, view and print the report as a pdf file. (1527KB) http://nces.ed.gov/pubs2014/2014001rev.pdf
Need Help Viewing PDF files?

Cover Date: November 2013
Web Release: November 26, 2013
Publication #: NCES 2014001REV
Center/Program: NCES

Authors: Xianglei Chen
Type of Product: Statistical Analysis Report

Survey/Program Areas: Beginning Postsecondary Students Longitudinal Study (BPS)

Keywords: Beginning students in postsecondary education
Postsecondary education
• field of study
• outcomes
• persistence and attainment
Science
STEM (Science, Engineering, Technology, Mathematics)

Questions: For questions about the content of this Statistical Analysis Report, please contact:
Aurora M. D’Amico.

Megan Rogers wrote in the Inside Higher Ed article, STEM-ming the Tide:

About 28 percent of bachelor’s degree candidates and 20 percent of associate degree candidates had declared a STEM major. Of those who had entered a STEM program, 48 percent of bachelor’s degree candidates had left the STEM field by spring 2009. The attrition rate was greater for associate degree candidates — 69 percent of STEM entrants had left the STEM field during the course of the study. An October 2012 report tracking students who had entered postsecondary education in the 2003-2004 academic year found the same attrition rate for STEM entrants.
The attrition rate was highest for bachelor’s degree candidates who declared a major in computer/information sciences and for associate degree candidates who declared a major in mathematics.
About half of those who left had switched into a non-STEM degree program and the other half had left college without earning any degree or certificate. The study found that 22 percent of bachelor’s degree candidates and 16 percent of associate’s degree students chose to pursue business majors.
Low-performing students (those with an overall grade point average below 2.5) were more likely to exit the STEM field by dropping out of college than were high-performing students (those with an overall GPA of 3.5 or higher). The high-performing students were more likely to switch to a non-STEM major than their low-performing peers.
The study found some differences in how men and women exited the STEM fields. More men than women left STEM disciplines by dropping out of college and more women than men left STEM by switching majors. According to the study, 32 percent of women who left STEM fields switched to a different major, compared with 26 percent of men. And 24 percent of men left the STEM field by dropping out of college, compared with 14 percent of women.
Taking lighter credits loads in STEM courses in the first year, taking less challenging math courses in the first year and performing poorly in STEM classes relative to non-STEM classes were associated with an increased probability of switching majors for STEM entrants, according to the study…. http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2013/11/27/study-tracks-attrition-rates-stem-majors#ixzz2lyY9tKKy

K-12 education must not only prepare students by teaching basic skills, but they must prepare students for training after high school, either college or vocational. There should not only be a solid education foundation established in K-12, but there must be more accurate evaluation of whether individual students are “college ready.”

Related:

Helping community college students to graduate https://drwilda.com/2012/02/08/helping-community-college-students-to-graduate/

The digital divide affects the college application process https://drwilda.com/2012/12/08/the-digital-divide-affects-the-college-application-process/

College readiness: What are ‘soft skills’ https://drwilda.com/2012/11/14/college-readiness-what-are-soft-skills/

Colleges rethinking who may need remedial education https://drwilda.com/2012/10/24/colleges-rethinking-who-may-need-remedial-education/

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Study: race determines how one views meritocracy

14 Aug

Moi wrote about the intersection of race and class in education in Race, class, and education in America:
Many educators have long recognized that the impact of social class affects both education achievement and life chances after completion of education. There are two impacts from diversity, one is to broaden the life experience of the privileged and to raise the expectations of the disadvantaged. Social class matters in not only other societies, but this one as well.
A few years back, the New York Times did a series about social class in America. That series is still relevant. Janny Scott and David Leonhardt’s overview,Shadowy Lines That Still Divide describes the challenges faced by schools trying to overcome the disparity in education. The complete series can be found at Social Class
https://drwilda.com/2011/11/07/race-class-and-education-in-america/

Rebecca Klein reported in the Huffington Post article, White People Support Academic Meritocracy When It Benefits Them, Study Suggests:

Do white people only support traditional definitions of meritocracy when it benefits them? A new study suggests so.
University of Miami professor Frank L. Samson looked at the idea of meritocracy through the lens of admissions standards in the University of California system. He found that white participants changed their ideas of what was meritocratic based on what benefitted white, as opposed to Asian-American, applicants.
After learning whites made up a majority of students at a school, half of the study’s participants were asked to evaluate the importance of academic achievement when they were assessing university applicants. The participants related that universities should place high value on an applicant’s standardized test scores and class rank.
Other study participants were told that Asian-Americans are disproportionately admitted to the school. These participants related that less weight should be placed on an applicant’s academics.
The study concludes that, “the shift to an Asian American plurality provoked a reaction that caused white evaluators to create an altered standard when weighing the academic merits of college applicants.”
These results come at a time when affirmative action — designed to further the opportunities of groups that have been historically discriminated against — is beinghotly debated. Some opponents of the practice argue that admissions should simply be based on concrete, meritocratic standards. However, as the study reveals, what is considered meritocratic to some may simply be based on what benefits the group with whom they most identify.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/13/whites-support-meritocracy-academics-study_n_3750312.html

Citation:

Altering Public University Admission Standards to Preserve White Group Position in the United States: Results from a Laboratory Experiment
Frank L. Samson
Comparative Education Review
Vol. 57, No. 3, Special Issue on Fair Access to Higher Education (August 2013), pp. 369-396
Published by: The University of Chicago Press
Article Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.1086/670664
10.1086/670664

See, White People Think College Admissions Should Be Based on Test Scores, Except When They Learn Asians Score Better Than Whites http://www.slate.com/blogs/moneybox/2013/08/13/white_people_s_meritocracy_hypocrisy.html

Scott Jaschick wrote in the Inside Higher Ed article, Meritocracy or Bias?

Frank L. Samson, assistant professor of sociology at the University of Miami, thinks his new research findings suggest that the definition of meritocracy used by white people is far more fluid than many would admit, and that this fluidity results in white people favoring certain policies (and groups) over others.
Specifically, he found, in a survey of white California adults, they generally favor admissions policies that place a high priority on high school grade-point averages and standardized test scores. But when these white people are focused on the success of Asian-American students, their views change.
The white adults in the survey were also divided into two groups. Half were simply asked to assign the importance they thought various criteria should have in the admissions system of the University of California. The other half received a different prompt, one that noted that Asian Americans make up more than twice as many undergraduates proportionally in the UC system as they do in the population of the state.
When informed of that fact, the white adults favor a reduced role for grade and test scores in admissions — apparently based on high achievement levels by Asian-American applicants. (Nationally, Asian average total scores on the three parts of the SAT best white average scores by 1,641 to 1,578 this year….)
Further, Samson said that key Supreme Court decisions have been framed as being about meritocracy when — if different groups had been involved — they might have been framed differently or not even been brought. For example, one of the most important recent rulings on affirmative action in employment came in 2009, when the Supreme Court ruled that officials in New Haven were wrong to throw out a promotion exam for firefighters after realizing that white candidates had done well and black candidates did not, on average, do as well. Those who sued, and the Supreme Court majority, said that the decision was about applying meritocratic standards.
But would the white firefighters have even sued, Samson said, “if Jews or Asians had taken the test and gotten higher scores?” In that case, he said, would everyone have endorsed the idea that the test was all that mattered?
http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2013/08/13/white-definitions-merit-and-admissions-change-when-they-think-about-asian-americans#ixzz2by7pHbph

People tend to cluster in neighborhoods based upon class as much as race. Good teachers tend to gravitate toward neighborhoods where they are paid well and students come from families who mirror their personal backgrounds and values. Good teachers make a difference in a child’s life. One of the difficulties in busing to achieve equity in education is that neighborhoods tend to be segregated by class as well as race. People often make sacrifices to move into neighborhoods they perceive mirror their values. That is why there must be good schools in all segments of the country and there must be good schools in all parts of this society. A good education should not depend upon one’s class or status.

Related:

U.S. Supreme Court to decide the affirmative action case, Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin (Case No. 11-345)
https://drwilda.com/tag/fisher-v-university-of-texas-at-austin/

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Blogs by Dr. Wilda:
COMMENTS FROM AN OLD FART©
http://drwildaoldfart.wordpress.com/
Dr. Wilda Reviews ©
http://drwildareviews.wordpress.com/
Dr. Wilda ©
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School Performance standards based on race: A new era of ‘Jim Crow’ in education?

18 Jul

Moi stated her opinion about school performance standards based on race in New Virginia education standards are racial profiling:
In 3rd world America: The link between poverty and education, moi wrote:
Moi blogs about education issues so the reader could be perplexed sometimes because moi often writes about other things like nutrition, families, and personal responsibility issues. Why? The reader might ask? Children will have the most success in school if they are ready to learn. Ready to learn includes proper nutrition for a healthy body and the optimum situation for children is a healthy family. Many of society’s problems would be lessened if the goal was a healthy child in a healthy family. There is a lot of economic stress in the country now because of unemployment and underemployment. Children feel the stress of their parents and they worry about how stable their family and living situation is.
The best way to eliminate poverty is job creation, job growth, and job retention. The Asian Development Bank has the best concise synopsis of the link between Education and Poverty For a good article about education and poverty which has a good bibliography, go to Poverty and Education, Overview  There will not be a good quality of life for most citizens without a strong education system. One of the major contributors to poverty in third world nations is limited access to education opportunities. Without continued sustained investment in education in this state, we are the next third world country.
The Casey Foundation reports in 2011 Kids Count Data Book about the well-being of children. Readers can create a custom profile for each state using the data center, which describe in detail how children in each state are doing. Two articles detail why this society must be focused on job creation and the expansion and preservation of the middle class. Too many people are financially insecure in the current economic climate.
The Huffington Post article, Poor Students With Poorly Educated Parents More Disadvantaged In U.S. Than Other Countries about the effect of income inequality:

Intuitively, a child’s academic performance is likely higher if he or she has highly educated parents, and lower if the child has less educated parents. A new report confirms that’s true, but reveals that American children of poorly educated parents do a lot worse than their counterparts in other countries.
Income mobility just within the U.S. has significantly declined since the mid-90s, according to a report this month by the Boston Federal Reserve. In recent years, families were more likely to stay within their income class than before — the rich are staying rich, and the poor and middle-class are struggling to move up the economic ladder….http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/11/18/poor-students-with-poorly_n_1101728.html?ref=email_share
https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2011/11/20/3rd-world-america-the-link-between-poverty-and-education/

Samreen Hooda reports in the Huffington Post article, Virginia New Achievement Standards Based On Race And Background:

Virginia’s new achievement standards have raised eyebrows.
Part of the state’s new standards dictate a specific percentage of racial group that should pass school exams, a move that has angered the Virginia Black Caucus. The caucus’ chairwoman, Democratic state Sen. Mamie Locke, says the new standards marginalize students by creating different goals for students of various backgrounds.
“Nothing is going to work for me if there is a differentiation being established for different groups of students,” Locke told the Daily Press. “Whether that’s race, socio-economic status or intellectual ability. If there is a differentiation, I have a problem with it.”
Virginia Secretary of Education Laura Fornash disagrees with Virginia Black Caucus’ assertions.
“Please be assured that the McDonnell administration does not hold a student of a particular race or income level, or those of any other subgroup, to a different standard,” Fornash wrote in a three-page letter explaining the changed standards.
The standards do not pose different pass rates for different groups: regardless of race, each student has to correctly answer the same number of test questions in order to pass. The difference lies in the expectation of passing from groups of different backgrounds. The new rules were designed as part of Virginia’s waiver from No Child Left Behind, along with 31 other states and Washington, D.C.
For instance, only 45 percent of black students are required to pass the math state test while 82 percent for Asian Americans, 68 percent for whites and 52 percent for Hispanics are required to pass. In reading, 92 percent of Asian students, 90 percent of white students, 80 percent of hispanic students, 76 percent of black students, and 59 percent of students with disabilities are required to pass the state exam. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/23/virginia-new-achievement-based-on-race_n_1826624.html?utm_hp_ref=email_share

Instead of lowering standards, maybe Virginia should be asking the question of how to raise standards for ALL children. https://drwilda.com/2012/08/24/new-virginia-education-standards-are-racial-profiling/

Grace Chen wrote in the Public School Review article, Performance Based on Race? Florida Schools Set Standards According to Ethnicity:

The New Benchmarks
The Examiner reports that the Florida State Board of Education has proposed setting academic benchmarks in math and reading according to the following subgroups:
 
Proficiency rating for reading by 2018 –

Asians                         90%
 
Whites                         88%
 
Native Americans       82%
 
Hispanics                    81%
 
African Americans      74%

Proficiency rating for mathematics by 2018 –

Asians                         92%
 
Whites                         86%
 
Native Americans       81%
 
Hispanics                    80%
 
African Americans      74%

Students with disabilities, those learning English as a second language and economically disadvantaged students will be left out of the new benchmarks completely, according to the Daily Caller. While this is the short-term goal proposed by the state board, members are quick to point out that the long-term goal is to have 100-percent proficiency in all subgroups for both math and reading by the 2022-2023 school year. That long-term goal hasn’t smoothed the feathers of many who were significantly ruffled after hearing the breakdown of the subgroups for the six-year goal….
 
It isn’t just the minority students at the bottom of the benchmarks getting a raw deal, according to representatives of some of the other subgroups. Winnie Tang, president of the Asian American Federation of Florida, told the Examiner that there are “a lot of [Asian] students that are average and below average. Being perceived as a higher achiever really hurts a lot of students.”
 
Even the former governor of Florida, Jeb Bush, appears at odds with the new standards. When similar benchmarks were recently introduced in Washington D.C., Bush wrote an op-ed for the Washington Post asserting that academic standards should be “color blind.” Others have voiced concerns over the fact that different benchmarks for races could eventually translate into different grading policies in the classroom between students. However, at this time, there is no indication that changes in grading policies would occur.  
 
Method to the Madness?
 
The Florida School Board defends its actions, stating the benchmarks are a more accurate reflection of where students are currently. Pam Stewart, Florida commissioner of education, told USA Today that the achievement targets for low-income and minority children are “very aggressive” – in fact more aggressive than those for white students because the former have more ground to make up in meeting federal benchmarks in the future. The goal is improvement in the numbers, after all.
 
For example, while the goal for African-American students is a reading proficiency of 74 percent, that is a monumental increase from the proficiency rating of 38 percent last year. By the same token, 69 percent of white students were proficient in reading last year. That means the jump they must make to 88 percent is actually a smaller jump than for African-American students.
 
“The target proficiency levels are very aggressive and they reflect the outlook by the board that none of the demographic sub-groups will achieve 100-percent proficiency by the end of the period outlined in the strategic plan,” Stewart also stated in the Daily Caller. “Nevertheless, the board did set higher expectations for the rate of growth in proficiency level for those subgroups with the lowest percentage of students currently performing at grade level.”
 
Amy Wilkins of the Education Trust in Washington D.C. told USA Today that her group designed the plan, which has been somewhat misrepresented by the Florida school board. Wilkins explains that similar plans have been adopted in 20 other states in order to qualify for No Child Left Behind waivers from the federal government. Last month, the District of Columbia announced a similar program for schools there.
 
Wilkins describes the plan as demanding “more improvement, and faster improvement for the kids that are falling behind. If people focused on that… we might get a little further without the fireworks,” Wilkins added.
 
While the hoopla over the racially-charged benchmarks continue, some educators worry that the controversy will mask the larger issue underneath. When only 38 percent of a particular subgroup is reading at a proficient level, the education system is failing a broad number of students. Even proficiency levels of 69 percent are far below the national goal of having all students reading at grade level. Whether students are broken down by race, income level or gender, one fact remains consistent – the United States is not doing a satisfactory job of educating its youth to be the American workforce of the future.
http://www.publicschoolreview.com/articles/490#.UeeaMtvERJ0.email

More states are considered race-based performance standards.

Jamon Smith writes in the Tuscaloosa News article, New education standards factor in student race, economic status:

It sets a different standard for students in each of several subgroups — American Indian, Asian/Pacific Islander, black, English language learners, Hispanic, multirace, poverty, special education and white.
No Child Left Behind divided students into subgroups as well, but it didn’t set different goals for students by subgroup.
For example, under No Child Left Behind, 95 percent of all third-graders had to pass math by 2013 for a school to meet education standards. All third-graders, black, white, poor, special needs or otherwise, had to meet the same goal.
But under Plan 2020, the percentage of third-graders required to pass math in 2013 is different for each subgroup.
The percentages needed for third-graders to pass math in their subgroups for 2013 are:
– 93.6 percent of Asian/Pacific Islander students.
– 91.5 percent of white students.
– 90.3 percent of American Indian students.
– 89.4 percent of multiracial students.
– 85.5 percent of Hispanic students.
– 82.6 percent of students in poverty.
– 79.6 percent of English language-learner students.
– 79 percent of black students.
61.7 percent of special needs students….. http://www.tuscaloosanews.com/article/20130630/NEWS/130629743

Schools must be relentless about the basics for their population of kids.   
What does it Mean to Be Relentless About the Basics:      
1.Students acquire strong subject matter skills in reading, writing, and math.
2.Students are assessed often to gauge where they are in acquiring basic skills.
3.If there are deficiencies in acquiring skills, schools intervene as soon as a deficiency assessment is made.
4.Schools intervene early in life challenges faced by students which prevent them from attending school and performing in school.
5.Appropriate corrective assistance is provided by the school to overcome both academic and life challenges.   
Many educators and policymakers are at a lost to deal with the complex social and economic stew of America. People tend to cluster in neighborhoods based upon class as much as race. Good teachers tend to gravitate toward neighborhoods where they are paid well and students come from families who mirror their personal backgrounds and values. Good teachers make a difference in a child’s life. One of the difficulties in busing to achieve equity in education is that neighborhoods tend to be segregated by class as well as race. People often make sacrifices to move into neighborhoods they perceive mirror their values. That is why there must be good schools in all segments of the country and there must be good schools in all parts of this society. A good education should not depend upon one’s class or status.
Related:
Center for American Progress report: Disparity in education spending for education of children of color https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2012/08/22/center-for-american-progress-report-disparity-in-education-spending-for-education-of-children-of-color/
Report: Black students more likely to be suspended https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2012/08/07/report-black-students-more-likely-to-be-suspended/
Study: When teachers overcompensate for prejudice https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2012/05/10/study-when-teachers-overcompensate-for-prejudice/
Who says Black children can’t learn? Some schools get it https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2012/03/22/who-says-black-children-cant-learn-some-schools-gets-it/
Harlem movie and the hard question: Does indigenous African-American culture support academic success?
https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2012/01/08/harlem-movie-and-the-hard-question-does-indigenous-african-american-culture-support-academic-success/
Social Class https://drwilda.com/tag/social-class/
Where information leads to Hope. ©  Dr. Wilda.com
 
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Blogs by Dr. Wilda:
 
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Study: Wealthier students are more connected on Facebook

30 Jun

 

Moi wrote in The role economic class plays in college success:

 

Many educators have long recognized that the impact of social class affects both education achievement and life chances after completion of education. There are two impacts from diversity, one is to broaden the life experience of the privileged and to raise the expectations of the disadvantaged. Social class matters in not only other societies, but this one as well.

 

A few years back, the New York Times did a series about social class in America. That series is still relevant. Janny Scott and David Leonhardt’s overview, Shadowy Lines That Still Divide describes the challenges faced by schools trying to overcome the disparity in education. The complete series can be found at Social Classhttps://drwilda.com/2011/11/07/race-class-and-education-in-america/

 

Jason DeParle reports in the New York Times article, For Poor Strivers, Leap to College Often Ends in a Hard Fall:

 

Everyone wants to think of education as an equalizer — the place where upward mobility gets started,” said Greg J. Duncan, an economist at the University of California, Irvine. “But on virtually every measure we have, the gaps between high- and low-income kids are widening. It’s very disheartening.”

 

The growing role of class in academic success has taken experts by surprise since it follows decades of equal opportunity efforts and counters racial trends, where differences have narrowed. It adds to fears over recent evidence suggesting that low-income Americans have lower chances of upward mobility than counterparts in Canada and Western Europe.

 

Thirty years ago, there was a 31 percentage point difference between the share of prosperous and poor Americans who earned bachelor’s degrees, according to Martha J. Bailey and Susan M. Dynarski of the University of Michigan. Now the gap is 45 points.

 

While both groups improved their odds of finishing college, the affluent improved much more, widening their sizable lead.

 

Likely reasons include soaring incomes at the top and changes in family structure, which have left fewer low-income students with the support of two-parent homes. Neighborhoods have grown more segregated by class, leaving lower-income students increasingly concentrated in lower-quality schools. And even after accounting for financial aid, the costs of attending a public university have risen 60 percent in the past two decades. Many low-income students, feeling the need to help out at home, are deterred by the thought of years of lost wages and piles of debt….

 

Income has always shaped academic success, but its importance is growing. Professor Reardon, the Stanford sociologist, examined a dozen reading and math tests dating back 25 years and found that the gap in scores of high- and low-income students has grown by 40 percent, even as the difference between blacks and whites has narrowed.

 

While race once predicted scores more than class, the opposite now holds. By eighth grade, white students surpass blacks by an average of three grade levels, while upper-income students are four grades ahead of low-income counterparts.

 

The racial gaps are quite big, but the income gaps are bigger,” Professor Reardon said.

 

One explanation is simply that the rich have clearly gotten richer. A generation ago, families at the 90th percentile had five times the income of those at the 10th percentile. Now they have 10 times as much.

 

But as shop class gave way to computer labs, schools may have also changed in ways that make parental income and education more important. SAT coaches were once rare, even for families that could afford them. Now they are part of a vast college preparation industry. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/23/education/poor-students-struggle-as-class-plays-a-greater-role-in-success.html?hpw&_r=0

 

K-12 education must not only prepare students by teaching basic skills, but they must prepare students for training after high school, either college or vocational. There should not only be a solid education foundation established in K-12, but there must be more accurate evaluation of whether individual students are “college ready.” A study by Purdue University Libraries Associate Professor Reynol Junco shows the class differences in the soft social skill of networking.

 

Bianca Bosker writes in the Huffington Post article, Wealthier College Students Share, Connect More On Facebook: Study:

 

Social media may have to reconsider its reputation as the great equalizer: according to a new study, college students from lower socioeconomic backgrounds are less likely than their wealthier peers to communicate and share on Facebook, behavior the study’s author argues could in turn be detrimental to academic performance and social life.

Purdue University Libraries Associate Professor Reynol Junco surveyed 2,359 college students with an average age of 22 years old to understand how gender, ethnicity and socioeconomic status affected their time spent on and usage of the social networking site. The survey participants were asked to estimate how much time they spent on Facebook and what they did during that time. (However, a previous study by Junco showed self-reporting to be an inaccurate representation of the time students actually spent browsing the site.)

facebook usage
The table above lists the frequency with which all the students surveyed said they engaged in different activities on Facebook.

Junco found that students used the site with equal frequency, irrespective of their backgrounds, spending an average of 101 minutes a day on Facebook.

But those whose parents completed a lower level of education — a proxy for socioeconomic status — were less inclined to engage in seven of 14 of core social activities on Facebook, including tagging photos, messaging privately, chatting on the site and creating or RSVPing to events, according to the study.

While the study did not determine if there were any activities that students from lower socioeconomic backgrounds were more likely to engage in, what those students are less likely to do on the site is notable, Junco wrote. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/06/25/college-students-facebook-study_n_3497733.html

Citation:

 

 

Computers in Human Behavior

 

Volume 29, Issue 6, November 2013, Pages 2328–2336

 

Inequalities in Facebook use

 

 

  • Library Science, Purdue University Libraries, West Lafayette, IN 47907, United States

 

 

 

 

Highlights

 

Little research has examined digital inequalities in social networking website use.
This study used a large sample to examine digital inequalities in Facebook usage.
Women were more likely to use Facebook for communication.
African Americans were less likely to use Facebook to check up on friends.
Those from lower SES were less likely to use Facebook for communication and sharing.

 

Abstract

 

While research has examined digital inequalities in general Internet use, little research has examined inequalities in social networking website use. This study extends previous research by examining how Facebook use is related to student background characteristics. Analyses were conducted to assess differences in time spent and activities performed on Facebook using a large sample (N = 2359) of college students. Results showed that women were more likely to use Facebook for communication, African Americans were less likely to use Facebook to check up on their friends, and students from lower socioeconomic levels were less likely to use Facebook for communication and sharing. Implications for education, communication, and student outcomes are presented.

 

These networking skills often aid in success later.

 

 

In College readiness: What are ‘soft skills’ moi wrote:

 

 

Soft skills are skills associated with “emotional intelligence.”

 

Jeanne Segal, Ph.D., and Melinda Smith, M.A. have written the excellent article, Emotional Intelligence (EQ) for HELPGUIDE.Org.

 

What is emotional intelligence?

 

Emotional intelligence (EQ) is the ability to identify, use, understand, and manage emotions in positive ways to relieve stress, communicate effectively, empathize with others, overcome challenges, and diffuse conflict. Emotional intelligence impacts many different aspects of your daily life, such as the way you behave and the way you interact with others.

 

If you have a high emotional intelligence you are able to recognize your own emotional state and the emotional states of others and engage with people in a way that draws them to you. You can use this understanding of emotions to relate better to other people, form healthier relationships, achieve greater success at work, and lead a more fulfilling life.

 

Emotional intelligence consists of four attributes:

 

  • Self-awareness – You recognize your own emotions and how they affect your thoughts and behavior, know your strengths and weaknesses, and have self-confidence.

  • Self-management – You’re able to control impulsive feelings and behaviors, manage your emotions in healthy ways, take initiative, follow through on commitments, and adapt to changing circumstances.

  • Social awareness – You can understand the emotions, needs, and concerns of other people, pick up on emotional cues, feel comfortable socially, and recognize the power dynamics in a group or organization.

  • Relationship management – You know how to develop and maintain good relationships, communicate clearly, inspire and influence others, work well in a team, and manage conflict.

 

Why is emotional intelligence (EQ) so important?

 

As we know, it’s not the smartest people that are the most successful or the most fulfilled in life. You probably know people who are academically brilliant and yet are socially inept and unsuccessful at work or in their personal relationships. Intellectual intelligence or IQ isn’t enough on its own to be successful in life. IQ can help you get into college but it’s EQ that will help you manage the stress and emotions of sitting your final exams.

 

Emotional intelligence affects:

 

  • Your performance at work. Emotional intelligence can help you navigate the social complexities of the workplace, lead and motivate others, and excel in your career. In fact, when it comes to gauging job candidates, many companies now view emotional intelligence as being as important as technical ability and require EQ testing before hiring.

  • Your physical health. If you’re unable to manage your stress levels, it can lead to serious health problems. Uncontrolled stress can raise blood pressure, suppress the immune system, increase the risk of heart attack and stroke, contribute to infertility, and speed up the aging process. The first step to improving emotional intelligence is to learn how to relieve stress.

  • Your mental health. Uncontrolled stress can also impact your mental health, making you vulnerable to anxiety and depression. If you are unable to understand and manage your emotions, you’ll also be open to mood swings, while an inability to form strong relationships can leave you feeling lonely and isolated.

  • Your relationships. By understanding your emotions and how to control them, you’re better able to express how you feel and understand how others are feeling. This allows you to communicate more effectively and forge stronger relationships, both at work and in your personal life. http://www.helpguide.org/mental/eq5_raising_emotional_intelligence.htm

 

Whether one calls success traits “emotional intelligence” or “soft skills” is really not important. The traits associated are those more likely to result in a successful outcome for the student.

 

Margaret Rouse defines “soft skills” in the post, Soft Skills. http://searchcio.techtarget.com/definition/soft-skills

 

K-12 education must not only prepare students by teaching basic skills, but they must prepare students for training after high school, either college or vocational. There should not only be a solid education foundation established in K-12, but there must be more accurate evaluation of whether individual students are “college ready.”   https://drwilda.com/2012/11/14/college-readiness-what-are-soft-skills/

 

 

Related:

 

Helping community college students to graduate                     https://drwilda.com/2012/02/08/helping-community-college-students-to-graduate/

 

The digital divide affects the college application process https://drwilda.com/2012/12/08/the-digital-divide-affects-the-college-application-process/

 

College readiness: What are ‘soft skills’                                   https://drwilda.com/2012/11/14/college-readiness-what-are-soft-skills/

 

Colleges rethinking who may need remedial education https://drwilda.com/2012/10/24/colleges-rethinking-who-may-need-remedial-education/

 

 

Where information leads to Hope. ©  Dr. Wilda.com

 

Dr. Wilda says this about that ©

 

Blogs by Dr. Wilda:

 

COMMENTS FROM AN OLD FART©                      http://drwildaoldfart.wordpress.com/

 

Dr. Wilda Reviews ©                                             http://drwildareviews.wordpress.com/

 

Dr. Wilda © https://drwilda.com/

 

 

U.S. Supreme Court case: Fisher v. University of Texas and race and class

16 Jun

Moi wrote about the intersection of race and class in education in Race, class, and education in America:

Many educators have long recognized that the impact of social class affects both education achievement and life chances after completion of education. There are two impacts from diversity, one is to broaden the life experience of the privileged and to raise the expectations of the disadvantaged. Social class matters in not only other societies, but this one as well.

A few years back, the New York Times did a series about social class in America. That series is still relevant. Janny Scott and David Leonhardt’s overview, Shadowy Lines That Still Divide describes the challenges faced by schools trying to overcome the disparity in education. The complete series can be found at Social Class                                   https://drwilda.com/2011/11/07/race-class-and-education-in-america/

Lindsey Layton has written the Washington Post article, Schools dilemma for gentrifiers: Keep their kids urban, or move to suburbia?

When his oldest son reached school age, Michael Petrilli faced a dilemma known to many middle-class parents living in cities they helped gentrify: Should the family flee to the homogenous suburbs for excellent schools or stay urban for diverse but often struggling schools?

Petrilli, who lived in Takoma Park with his wife and two sons, was torn, but he knew more than most people about the choice before him. Petrilli is an education expert, a former official in the Education Department under George W. Bush and executive vice president at the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, a right-leaning education think tank.

He set out to learn as much as he could about the risks and benefits of socioeconomically diverse schools, where at least 20 percent of students are eligible for the federal free or reduced-price lunch program. And then he wrote about it.

The result is “The Diverse Schools Dilemma,” which is being published and released next month by the Fordham Institute.

Petrilli said he wanted his son to have friends from all backgrounds because he believes that cultural literacy will prepare him for success in a global society.

But he worried that his son might get lost in a classroom that has a high percentage of poor children, that teachers would be focused on the struggling children and have less time for their more privileged peers.

As Petrilli points out in the book, this dilemma doesn’t exist for most white, middle-class families. The vast majority — 87 percent — of white students attend majority white schools, Petrilli says, even though they make up just about 50 percent of the public school population.

And even in urban areas with significant African American and Latino populations, neighborhood schools still tend to be segregated by class, if not by race. In the Washington region, less than 3 percent of white public school students attend schools where poor children are the majority, according to Petrilli.

Gentrification poses new opportunities for policymakers to desegregate schools, Petrilli argues….

In the end, Petrilli moved from his Takoma Park neighborhood school — diverse Piney Branch Elementary, which is 33 percent low-income — to Wood Acres Elementary in Bethesda, where 1 percent of the children are low-income, 2 percent are black and 5 percent are Hispanic. http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/schools-dilemma-for-urban-gentrifiers-keep-their-kids-urban-or-move-to-suburbia/2012/10/14/02083b6c-131b-11e2-a16b-2c110031514a_story.html

Often, schools are segregated by both race and class. Class identification is very important in education because of class and peer support for education achievement and the value placed on education by social class groups. Moi does not condemn Mr. Petrilli for doing what is best for his family because when the rubber meets the road that is what parents are supposed to do. His family’s situation is just an example of the intersection of race and class in education.

Richard D. Kahlenberg, a senior fellow at The Century Foundation, looks at the issue of class-based affirmative action in higher education admissions in the Washington Post article, Race vs. class in college admissions: A false dichotomy or not?

Sherrilyn A. Ifill, the president and director-counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund Inc., just wrote a New York Times op-ed in defense of race-based affirmative action. The future direction of such policies is likely to be decided at some time in the next two weeks when the U.S. Supreme Court issues its ruling in a challenge to racial preferences in the case of Fisher v. University of Texas.

In particular, Ifill is concerned that “an alarming number of scholars, pundits and columnists—many of them liberal—have declared that economic class, not race, should be the appropriate focus of university affirmative-action efforts.” As a longtime proponent of class-based affirmative action (author of a 1996 book, “The Remedy: Class, Race and Affirmative Action,” coauthor a 2012 Century Foundation report, “A Better Affirmative Action: State Universities that Created Alternatives to Racial Preferences”) and a liberal, to boot, let me explain why I disagree with the four central arguments Ifill advances in favor of racial preference policies.

1. Race Still Matters, Therefore Racial Preferences Are Needed

Ifill argues that because racial discrimination continues to exist in American society—in the criminal justice system, housing, and employment—universities should be allowed to use racial preferences as a countermeasure.

Ifill is correct, of course, to suggest that discrimination continues to be a serious problem, which is why it would be crazy to repeal civil rights laws that are meant to address such discrimination. But the providing of racial preferences—the equivalent of a 310 point SAT boost in admissions to African Americans at selective private universities, according to Thomas Espenshade and Alexandra Radford—has never been held by the Supreme Court to be an appropriate remedy for ongoing societal discrimination. Instead, the argument that has prevailed is that racial preferences are necessary to promote the educational benefits of racial and ethnic diversity in the classroom.

The problem in applying the diversity argument, in turn, is that the University of Texas found a way to create higher levels of racial and ethnic diversity—by reducing reliance on test scores and giving a boost to economically disadvantaged students of all races—than they had using race. In 1996, when a lower court held Texas’s racial preference plan unconstitutional, the freshman class at U.T. Austin (using race in admissions) was 4.1 percent African American and 14.5 percent Hispanic. By 2004, race-neutral alternatives produced a class that was 4.5 percent African-American and 16.9 percent Hispanic. (Texas subsequently began using race again, which prompted the Fisher litigation.)

Moreover, class-based programs can be carefully defined in a way that captures the impact of racial discrimination—by considering, for example, whether a student lives in concentrated poverty, a reflection, in some measure, of racial housing discrimination.

2. Affirmative Action Has Majority Support

Ifill dismisses concerns that racial preferences are unpopular, suggesting that this is not the proper measure of such policies, and then goes on to suggest “a recent New York Times poll showed that most Americans support affirmative action.” The poll indeed found that, by 53 percent to 38 percent, Americans favor “affirmative action programs for minorities in hiring, promoting and college admissions.” But the issue at stake in Fisher is not the amorphous concept of affirmative steps—which can include encouraging minority students to apply—but whether race should count in who is admitted. On that question, a recent Washington Post poll found by 76 percent to 22 percent, Americans oppose “allowing universities to consider applicants’ race as a factor in deciding which students to admit.” And a Wall Street Journal/NBC poll found that even in using the vague affirmative action language, support was at an “historic low.”

3. Universities Need Wealthy Students of Color

Ifill also raises the concern that if universities shift the basis of affirmative action preferences from race to class, “We may simply reinforce stereotypes within the student body that will equate minority students with poverty.” This argument was also advanced by the University of Texas: that race-neutral plans produced too many low-income and working-class minority students and that Texas needed to provide a preference to wealthy minority students such as “the African American or Hispanic child of successful professionals in Dallas” who would defy stereotypes.

This line of argument highlights how far the case for race-based affirmative action has drifted from basic concepts of fairness….

4. Race vs. Class Is a False Dichotomy

Ifill’s final, and most theoretically plausible, argument is that pitting race and class poses a “false dichotomy” because universities can provide a leg up to students on both criteria. Indeed, universities purport to do just that, saying they consider both race and class in admissions.

But extensive research from Anthony Carnevale of Georgetown University and William Bowen, the former president of Princeton University, puts the lie to that claim. In fact, most selective universities provide very heavy preferences based on race, and virtually no consideration to economic disadvantage. From a self-interested perspective, that’s understandable. A lack of class diversity is easier to hide than a lack of racial diversity; and addressing socioeconomic diversity is more expensive because low-incomes students need greater financial aid and support on campus….

I have been hearing the argument, “let’s pursue race and class diversity together,” for more than two decades. But somehow, as long as universities can employ robust racial preferences, the vast majority never gets around to addressing class. As a result, a generation of talented low-income and working-class students have been virtually shut out of America’s competitive colleges and universities.http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/answer-sheet/wp/2013/06/15/race-vs-class-in-college-admissions-a-false-dichotomy-or-not/

People tend to cluster in neighborhoods based upon class as much as race. Good teachers tend to gravitate toward neighborhoods where they are paid well and students come from families who mirror their personal backgrounds and values. Good teachers make a difference in a child’s life. One of the difficulties in busing to achieve equity in education is that neighborhoods tend to be segregated by class as well as race. People often make sacrifices to move into neighborhoods they perceive mirror their values. That is why there must be good schools in all segments of the country and there must be good schools in all parts of this society. A good education should not depend upon one’s class or status.

Related:

U.S. Supreme Court to decide the affirmative action case, Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin (Case No. 11-345)                                                                                      https://drwilda.com/tag/fisher-v-university-of-texas-at-austin/

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New America Foundation report: Colleges select wealthy students for merit scholarships

12 May

Moi wrote in Race, class, and education in America:

Many educators have long recognized that the impact of social class affects both education achievement and life chances after completion of education. There are two impacts from diversity, one is to broaden the life experience of the privileged and to raise the expectations of the disadvantaged. Social class matters in not only other societies, but this one as well.

A few years back, the New York Times did a series about social class in America. That series is still relevant. Janny Scott and David Leonhardt’s overview, Shadowy Lines That Still Divide describes the challenges faced by schools trying to overcome the disparity in education. The complete series can be found at Social Class

Sam Dillion has written an insightful New York Times article, Merger of Memphis and County School Districts Revives Race and Class Challenges:

When thousands of white students abandoned the Memphis schools 38 years ago rather than attend classes with blacks under a desegregation plan fueled by busing, Joseph A. Clayton went with them. He quit his job as a public school principal to head an all-white private school and later won election to the board of the mostly white suburban district next door.

Now, as the overwhelmingly black Memphis school district is being dissolved into the majority-white Shelby County schools, Mr. Clayton is on the new combined 23-member school board overseeing the marriage. And he warns that the pattern of white flight could repeat itself, with the suburban towns trying to secede and start their own districts.

There’s the same element of fear,” said Mr. Clayton, 79. “In the 1970s, it was a physical, personal fear. Today the fear is about the academic decline of the Shelby schools.”

As far as racial trust goes,” Mr. Clayton, who is white, added, “I don’t think we’ve improved much since the 1970s….”

Toughest of all may be bridging the chasms of race and class. Median family income in Memphis is $32,000 a year, compared with the suburban average of $92,000; 85 percent of students in Memphis are black, compared with 38 percent in Shelby County….http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/06/education/merger-of-memphis-and-county-school-districts-revives-challenges.html?emc=eta1

People tend to cluster in neighborhoods based upon class as much as race. Good teachers tend to gravitate toward neighborhoods where they are paid well and students come from families who mirror their personal backgrounds and values. Good teachers make a difference in a child’s life. One of the difficulties in busing to achieve equity in education is that neighborhoods tend to be segregated by class as well as race. People often make sacrifices to move into neighborhoods they perceive mirror their values. That is why there must be good schools in all segments of the country and there must be good schools in all parts of this society. A good education should not depend upon one’s class or status. https://drwilda.com/2011/11/07/race-class-and-education-in-america/

Elvina Nawaguna of NBC News reports in the article, Study: Low-income students get less merit aid than wealthier classmates:

Low-income students are increasingly bypassed when colleges offer applicants financial aid, as schools compete for wealthier students who can afford rising tuition and fees, according to a public policy institute’s analysis of U.S. Department of Education data.

The study by The New America Foundation said that colleges, in their quest to advance their U.S. News & World Report rankings, are directing more financial aid to high-achieving applicants in a bid to elevate the profile of their student population.

“A lot of them (colleges) go for the same students from the rich suburban schools,” said Stephen Burd, the foundation’s education policy analyst who studied the data.

The U.S. News rankings of colleges and universities have become a popular gauge of the quality of an undergraduate and graduate institution’s education and the prestige of its degrees.

As part of their strategy to compete for the best students, colleges use merit-based aid, which does not take into account financial need. Under this strategy, institutions may, for instance, give four $5,000 awards to lure four wealthy students rather than award $20,000 to one needy student, the organization said.

While the federal government issues guidelines on distribution of its grants, it doesn’t regulate aid from an institution’s coffers. Colleges have fiercely fought efforts by lawmakers to force greater transparency in financial aid practices.

Colleges, many under tighter budgets as they offer more amenities and hire the best professors, are under pressure to raise revenues and are using tuition prices to do so.                  

http://www.nbcnews.com/business/study-low-income-students-get-less-merit-aid-wealthier-classmates-1C9864738

Here is the press release from New America Foundation:

NEW REPORT: Colleges Leaving Low-Income Students Behind

Schools Increasingly Using Financial Aid to Woo Wealthy Students Rather Than Help Low-Income Students Afford Tuition

Published:   May 8, 2013

Washington, DC — In their relentless pursuit of prestige and revenue, American private and public four-year colleges and universities are increasingly using financial aid to attract the best and most affluent students rather than to help low-income and working-class families pay for college, according to a new report released today by the New America Foundation’s Education Policy Program.

The report presents a brand new analysis of little-examined U.S. Department of Education data showing the “net price” the lowest-income students pay after all grant aid has been exhausted. The analysis shows that hundreds of colleges expect the neediest students — those from families making $30,000 or less annually — to pay an amount equal to or even more than their families’ yearly earnings.

The report finds that over the past two decades colleges have made a dramatic switch in how they use the majority of their financial aid. Schools have gone from helping to make college more affordable for those with the greatest financial need to strategically awarding merit aid to students who can increase their standings in rankings like U.S. News & World Report and bring in more revenue. This report identifies colleges that are committed to enrolling low-income students and charging them affordable prices and others that are stingy with their admissions slots, their financial aid dollars, or both.

“Too many four-year colleges, both public and private, are failing to help the government achieve its college access mission,” Stephen Burd, author of the report, writes. “They are, instead, adding hurdles that could hamper the education progress of needy students or leave them with mountains of debt after they graduate.”

The report shows the situation is not as extreme at public universities but getting worse. One of the main ways states have dealt with dwindling state support has been to take a “high tuition, high aid” approach — raising tuition and the amount of financial aid they provide. However, this analysis finds the “high tuition, high aid” approach has been a failure for low-income students: in states such as Pennsylvania, the neediest students are being charged more than double what they are in low-tuition states.

Among the report’s findings:

Nearly two-thirds of private nonprofit institutions charge students from the lowest income families a net price of more than $15,000. Only 11 percent charge them less than $10,000.
• Roughly one-third of public four year colleges charge the lowest-income students a net price over $10,000 and 5 percent require they come up with $15,000 or more.
• One-quarter of the public schools that charge more than $10,000 to lowest income students are in Ohio and Pennsylvania, two states that follow the high-tuition, high-aid model.
• The most expensive private college for low-income students is Santa Clara University (average net price is $46,347) and the most expensive public college for the neediest students is Rowan University in New Jersey (average net price is $20,384).

The report argues for a federal approach that follows a two-part plan laid out here:

Offer Pell bonuses to financially strapped public and private four-year colleges that serve a substantial share of Pell Grant recipients (more than 25 percent) and graduate at least half of their students school-wide.
• Require wealthier colleges that have chosen to divert their aid to try to buy the best students so they can rise up the U.S. News rankings to match at least a share of the Pell dollars they receive.

Read the full report, “Undermining Pell: How Colleges Compete for Wealthy Students and Leave the Low-Income Behind.”

For more information or to schedule an interview, please contact Clara Hogan.

The lawyers in Brown were told that lawsuits were futile and that the legislatures would address the issue of segregation eventually when the public was ready. Meanwhile, several generations of African Americans waited for people to come around and say the Constitution applied to us as well. Generations of African Americans suffered in inferior schools. This society cannot sacrifice the lives of children by not addressing the issue of equity in school funding in a timely manner.

The next huge case, like Brown, will be about equity in education funding. It may not come this year or the next year. It, like Brown, may come several years after a Plessy. It will come. Equity in education funding is the civil rights issue of this century.

Related:

The role economic class plays in college success           https://drwilda.com/2012/12/22/the-role-economic-class-plays-in-college-success/

Helping community college students to graduate                  https://drwilda.com/2012/02/08/helping-community-college-students-to-graduate/

The digital divide affects the college application process https://drwilda.com/2012/12/08/the-digital-divide-affects-the-college-application-process/

College readiness: What are ‘soft skills’                                                https://drwilda.com/2012/11/14/college-readiness-what-are-soft-skills/

Colleges rethinking who may need remedial education https://drwilda.com/2012/10/24/colleges-rethinking-who-may-need-remedial-education/

Where information leads to Hope. ©      Dr. Wilda.com

Dr. Wilda says this about that

Blogs by Dr. Wilda:

COMMENTS FROM AN OLD FART©                      http://drwildaoldfart.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda Reviews ©                                             http://drwildareviews.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda ©                                                                                                    https://drwilda.com/

Economic class integration is just as important as racial integration

5 Jan

Moi has consistently blogged about race and class and their impact on education outcomes for children. In Race, class, and education in America, moi said:

Many educators have long recognized that the impact of social class affects both education achievement and life chances after completion of education. There are two impacts from diversity, one is to broaden the life experience of the privileged and to raise the expectations of the disadvantaged. Social class matters in not only other societies, but this one as well.

A few years back, the New York Times did a series about social class in America. That series is still relevant. Janny Scott and David Leonhardt’s overview, Shadowy Lines That Still Divide describes the challenges faced by schools trying to overcome the disparity in education. The complete series can be found at Social Class                                https://drwilda.com/2011/11/07/race-class-and-education-in-america/

Jay Mathews reports in the Washington Post article, Discarded integration method sees new life about an American Educator article written by Richard D. Kahlenberg.

As Kahlenberg says in an illuminating new piece in American Educator magazine, research shows that poor kids transferred to schools with middle-class majorities do better academically, on average, than in schools with low-income majorities. Why? Kahlenberg offers three reasons: predominantly middle-class schools have student peers with better study habits and behavior, parents who are more involved in the school and more likely to complain about problems and stronger teachers with higher expectations for their students.

Since this is a mostly middle-class country, why can’t we adjust school boundaries and provide transportation to let all low-income students have these role models and protectors?

People who ask that question get quizzical looks from know-it-alls like me. Don’t you remember the seventies? We tried putting poor black kids into affluent white neighborhood schools and vice versa. It was a well-intentioned, disheartening failure. Voters rebelled against boundary changes and busing. Affluent parents abandoned socioeconomically integrated schools. Politicians local and national, Democratic and Republican, gave up on the idea.

But Kahlenberg hasn’t, and his point of view has made surprising headway.

In his new piece, “From All Walks of Life: New Hope for School Integration,” he describes a small but increasing number of successful experiments in socioeconomic balance. Skeptics like me should at least acknowledge that many affluent American parents want their children to mix with low-income students, so long as everyone is getting a challenging education.

I asked Kahlenberg how Washington area schools might move in this direction. In suburban districts such as Montgomery County, he said, “greater integration could be facilitated by creating whole school (as opposed to within-school) magnet programs to attract more affluent students into schools located in tougher neighborhoods. Likewise, money could be used to provide a financial bonus for wealthier schools to accept low-income student transfers.” School boundary adjustments could help. Local activists, and even D.C. school chancellor Kaya Henderson, have shown interest in such approaches.

With socioeconomic integration still difficult to arrange, conscientious educators have tried instead to bring the habits and expectations of rich schools to poor ones. They hire only principals and teachers with high expectations for inner-city kids. They make the school day and year longer to compensate for the lack of middle-class enrichment at home. They insist on students obeying the same attendance and classroom behavior rules found in affluent schools. They prepare all students for college, as private schools do.

They are, in essence, embracing Kahlenberg’s point, that middle-class values produce better students. So I think Kahlenberg is wrong to suggest such schools weaken support for socioeconomic integration. I also don’t accept his view that the KIPP charter school network, a favorite of mine, looks significantly better than it is because of attrition and better parents. KIPP is not perfect, but many researchers have verified its progress. Kahlenberg’s arguments are weakened by out-of-date data and unexamined assumptions.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/class-struggle/post/discarded-integration-method-sees-new-life/2013/01/02/211a4ff8-5525-11e2-bf3e-76c0a789346f_blog.html.

Citation:

American Educator
Winter 2012–2013

Table of Contents

From All Walks of Life (PDF) (HTML)
New Hope for School Integration
By Richard D. Kahlenberg

Integrating our schools is a goal that many of us share. But some seem to have given up on the idea, as plans to boost racial diversity have come under attack, and as the fixation on test scores has narrowed some people’s concept of a good education. There is, however, new hope: integration by socioeconomic status. It’s a cost-effective, legally sound strategy that can promote racial diversity while narrowing the achievement gap.

Moi, unlike Mathews, agrees with Kahlenberg’s premise.

Caralee Adams writes in the Education Week article, Why High School Students Drop Out and Efforts to Re-Engage:

Parenthood—either being a parent or missing out on parental support—is the leading reason cited by dropouts for leaving school, according to a new survey.

The 2012 High School Dropouts in America survey was released today by Harris/Decima, a division of Harris Interactive, on behalf of Everest College, a part of the for-profit Corinthian College Inc.

The poll was commissioned to help policymakers and educators understand why students drop out of high school and find effective ways to re-engage them in the hope of improving graduation rates.

The survey asked 513 adults, ages 19 to 35: “Which, if any, of the following reasons prevented you from finishing high school?” Here are the responses:

  1. Absence of parental support or encouragement (23 percent)
  2. Becoming a parent (21 percent)
  3. Lacking the credits needed to graduate (17 percent)
  4. Missing too many days of school (17 percent)
  5. Failing classes (15 percent)
  6. Uninteresting classes (15 percent)
  7. Experiencing a mental illness, such as depression (15 percent)
  8. Having to work to support by family (12 percent)
  9. Was bullied and didn’t want to return (12 percent)

In the survey, conducted online in October, 55 percent of the dropouts looked into, but had not started the process of getting their high school equivalency or GED. The likelihood of doing so is higher for those who are married (67 percent). The reasons for not getting a GED: “not having enough time” (34 percent) and “it costs too much” (26 percent).

One-third of high school dropouts say they are employed either full time, part time, or are self‐employed. Another 38 percent of the men and 26 percent of the women were unemployed.

Attracting young adults who have dropped out back for more education is a challenge.

Often students don’t want to return to the same school they left and are looking for flexible options. One approach that is showing promise is the Boston Public Re-Engagement Center. There, students can retake up to two courses they previously failed; try online credit recovery, or attend night school or summer school. Coming into the program, out-of-school youths are connected with an adult to discuss goals, finances, and enrollment options. http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/college_bound/2012/11/examining_reasons_for_dropping_out_of_high_school_and_ways_to_re-engage_students.html

See, High School Dropouts Worsened By Lack Of Support, Becoming A Parent: Survey http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/15/lack-of-support-becoming-_n_2137961.html?utm_hp_ref=email_share

Many of these issues are tied to the economic status of the student and their family.

In Michael Petrilli’s decision: An ed reformer confronts race and class when choosing a school for his kids, moi wrote:

Lindsey Layton wrote the Washington Post article, Schools dilemma for gentrifiers: Keep their kids urban, or move to suburbia?

When his oldest son reached school age, Michael Petrilli faced a dilemma known to many middle-class parents living in cities they helped gentrify: Should the family flee to the homogenous suburbs for excellent schools or stay urban for diverse but often struggling schools?

Petrilli, who lived in Takoma Park with his wife and two sons, was torn, but he knew more than most people about the choice before him. Petrilli is an education expert, a former official in the Education Department under George W. Bush and executive vice president at the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, a right-leaning education think tank…

In the end, Petrilli moved from his Takoma Park neighborhood school — diverse Piney Branch Elementary, which is 33 percent low-income — to Wood Acres Elementary in Bethesda, where 1 percent of the children are low-income, 2 percent are black and 5 percent are Hispanic.

Often, schools are segregated by both race and class. Class identification is very important in education because of class and peer support for education achievement and the value placed on education by social class groups. Moi does not condemn Mr. Petrilli for doing what is best for his family because when the rubber meets the road that is what parents are supposed to do. His family’s situation is just an example of the intersection of race and class in education.                https://drwilda.com/2012/11/11/micheal-pettrillis-decision-an-ed-reformer-confronts-race-and-class-when-choosing-a-school-for-his-kids/

Related:

The role economic class plays in college success                                             https://drwilda.com/2012/12/22/the-role-economic-class-plays-in-college-success/

The ‘school-to-prison pipeline’                                                                                   https://drwilda.com/2012/11/27/the-school-to-prison-pipeline/

Trying not to raise a bumper crop of morons: Hong Kong’s ‘tutor kings and queens’                                                                      https://drwilda.com/2012/11/26/trying-not-to-raise-a-bumper-crop-of-morons-hong-kongs-tutor-kings-and-queens/

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