Economic divide between schools shortchanges our kids
As California’s children go back to school, we can all learn something from a lesson, however depressing, on how much the economic gap between school districts can shortchange students.
Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/opinion/opn-columns-blogs/foon-rhee/article98128352.html#storylink=cpy
A new study points out that nearly half of America’s school kids live in high-poverty districts that are often right next to much richer ones that offer far greater educational opportunities. The EdBuild analysis highlights the 50 most economically segregated pairs of school districts, where the average difference in poverty rate is 37 percentage points, more than five times the national average.
These districts are in 14 states, mostly in the Rust Belt, but California isn’t immune. The list includes Perris Elementary School District in Riverside County, which has a poverty rate among school-age children of 50 percent and which is adjacent to two wealthier districts.
Michael Hanson, Fresno Unified’s superintendent, says the study is another reminder of the challenges facing a public school system in a high-poverty city. But he makes clear that it’s not an excuse for mediocrity.
“The way to fight concentrated poverty is with concentrated education,” he says.