Thursday, October 05, 2006

Is NCLB Increasing The Minority Achievement Gap? 

Fascinating editorial in today's Washington Post by Jennifer Booher-Jennings, a doctoral student at Columbia University which argues that NCLB is actually increasing the gap between whites and minorities:

The stakes for schools are enormous. So it isn't surprising that many educators game the system by reaching first for the low-hanging fruit, the students closest to passing. Dubbed the "bubble kids," because their scores put them on the bubble of the passing mark, these students give schools the biggest bang for the buck. In response to this incentive, many schools have rationed out practically all of their resources to these students. Meanwhile, the lowest-performing students, the "hopeless cases," languish. So do their high-performing classmates, who are relegated to the waiting room while the bubble kids are cured.
Is she correct? The author states that Charles Murray and the Harvard University Civil Rights Project have come to the same conclusion.

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