Closing the Opportunity Gap What America Must Do to Give Every Child an Even Chance

ISBN-10: 0199982996
ISBN-13: 9780199982998
Edition: 2013
List price: $29.95 Buy it from $17.99
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Description: While the achievement gap has dominated policy discussions over the past two decades, relatively little attention has been paid to a gap that is even more at odds with American ideals: the opportunity gap. Opportunity and achievement, while  More...

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Book details

List price: $29.95
Copyright year: 2013
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publication date: 5/22/2013
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 320
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.00" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 0.946
Language: English

While the achievement gap has dominated policy discussions over the past two decades, relatively little attention has been paid to a gap that is even more at odds with American ideals: the opportunity gap. Opportunity and achievement, while inextricably connected, are very different goals.Every American will not go to college, but every American should be given fair opportunities to be prepared for college. By obsessively focusing on measuring achievement, the nation's policymakers have made little progress in measuring or addressing inequitable opportunities. Policy therefore failsto engage with the challenges, supports, and resources that lead to improvements in student learning. The achievement gap has not arisen by coincidence; children learn when they have opportunities to learn, and gaps in opportunities have led to gaps in achievement. Moreover, students' learningexperiences and outcomes are deeply affected by many factors outside of the immediate control of schools.Closing the Opportunity Gap brings together top experts who offer evidence-based essays that paint a powerful picture of denied opportunities. They also describe sensible, research-based policy approaches to enhance opportunities. They highlight the discrepancies that exist in our society and in ourpublic schools, focusing on how policy decisions and broader circumstances conspire to create the opportunity gap that leads inexorably to the outcome differences that have become so stark. The volume makes a compelling case that American educational policy must move beyond the conventional focus onachievement and opens a discussion about the common sense ways schools can and should give all American children more equitable opportunities to thrive.

Acknowledgments
Contributors
Achievement Gaps Arise from Opportunity Gaps
Lack of Achievement or Loss of Opportunity?
Overcoming the Obstacles We Create for Children
Educationalizing the Welfare State and Privatizing Education: The Evolution of Social Policy since the New Deal
Housing Segregation Produces Unequal Schools: Causes and Solutions
Why Children from Lower Socioeconomic Classes, on Average, Have Lower Academic Achievement Than Middle-Class Children
Overcoming the Obstacles We Create for Schools
Inequality and School Resources: What It Will Take to Close the Opportunity Gap
Achievement Gaps Start Early: Preschool Can Help
How Common Standards and Standardized Testing Widen the Opportunity Gap
A More Perfect Union: Reconciling School Choice Policy with Equality of Opportunity Goals
Overcoming the Obstacles We Create for Equality
Student and School Cultures and the Opportunity Gap: Paying Attention to Academic Engagement and Achievement
Meeting the Needs of Language Minorities
Tracking, Segregation, and the Opportunity Gap: What We Know and Why It Matters
Good Schools and Teachers for All Students: Dispelling Myths, Facing Evidence, and Pursuing the Right Strategies
Solutions/Conclusion
The Cumulative Costs of the Opportunity Gap
Enhancing a Nation's Democracy through Equitable Schools
Building Opportunities to Achieve
Notes
References
Index

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