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Born to Win, Schooled to Lose: Why Equally Talented Students Don’t Get Equal Chances to Be All They Can Be

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Born to Win, Schooled to Lose: Why Equally Talented Students Don’t Get Equal Chances to Be All They Can Be

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Born to Win, Schooled to Lose: Why Equally Talented Students Don’t Get Equal Chances to Be All They Can Be

  1. 1. By: Anthony P. Carnevale, Megan L. Fasules, Michael C. Quinn, & Kathryn Peltier Campbell MAY 15, 2019
  2. 2. In America, it’s often better to be rich than smart • The most talented young people are sorted into haves and have-nots long before college. • An affluent kindergartner with bottom-half test scores still has a 7 in 10 chance of reaching high socioeconomic status (SES) as a young adult. • Meanwhile, a disadvantaged kindergartener with top- half test scores only has a 3 in 10 chance. • Additional disparities are apparent by race and ethnicity: Black and Latino tenth graders with top-half math scores are less likely to earn a college degree than their White and Asian peers. 2
  3. 3. Advantaged children benefit from their parents’ habits and education • The highest-SES families spend almost five times as much on enrichment activities as the lowest-SES families. • Almost all children from the highest-SES families have at least one parent with some postsecondary education, compared to less than one third of children from the lowest-SES families. 3 Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce
  4. 4. By the first year of school, academic gaps are already large by SES 4 Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce • The skills children begin developing at birth lay the groundwork for the math skills they are expected to possess in kindergarten. • Kindergartners from high-SES families are more likely than their low- SES peers to score in the top half on math assessments.
  5. 5. • Advantaged students have resources that help keep them on track in school, while their peers who don’t are more likely to fall behind and stay behind. • Kindergartners in higher SES quartiles with bottom-half math scores are much more likely to move into the top half of all students by eighth grade. • By contrast, low-SES students who start off with top-half math scores are less likely to maintain those high scores throughout K-12. 5 Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce Affluence affords a complex safety net Source: Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce analysis of Early Childhood Longitudinal Study- Kindergarten (public use data), 2006. Note: Columns may not add to 100 percent due to rounding.
  6. 6. • Black kindergartners with bottom-half math scores are much less likely than their White, Asian, and Latino peers to have top- half math scores by eighth grade. • These racial and ethnic gaps in test scores continue and are cemented as students move through high school. 6 Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce Relative affluence has a more protective effect for White than for Black students
  7. 7. Achievement patterns are largely set in high school 7 Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce • Most tenth-graders who score in the bottom math quartile maintain their low grades through twelfth grade. • Improving scores in high school is uncommon, but highest-SES students are twice as likely as lowest-SES students to move into a higher math quartile. Source: Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce analysis of the Education Longitudinal Study of 2002 (public use data), 2012.
  8. 8. • Lowest-SES tenth graders with top math scores are less likely to immediately enroll in a college than highest-SES tenth graders with bottom math scores. • Lowest-SES tenth graders are less likely than highest-SES students to complete college 10 years later—regardless of their high school math scores. 8 Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce Highest-SES students are more likely to attend and complete college
  9. 9. • White and Asian tenth graders are more likely than Black and Latino tenth graders to earn a college degree in 10 years, no matter their high school math scores. 9 Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce Chances of completing college also vary by race and ethnicity
  10. 10. • With policy changes, education can be the great equalizer. • Students with similar scores across class and race and ethnicity would have similar outcomes if education were the lever we need it to be. 10 Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce Policy Recommendations
  11. 11. 11 cew.georgetown.edu/Schooled2Lose More Information cew@georgetown.edu Facebook.com/ GeorgetownCEW linkedin.com/company/ georgetowncew @GeorgetownCEW Slideshare.net/ CEWGeorgetown YouTube.com/ CEWGeorgetown

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