Race And Income Disparities

Friday, December 17, 2021 9:23:41 PM

Race And Income Disparities

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Income Disparity in Race

This site uses cookies to deliver website functionality and analytics. If you would like to know more about the types of cookies we serve and how to change your cookie settings, please read our Cookie Notice. By clicking the "I accept" button, you consent to the use of these cookies. America is experiencing some of its most widespread civil unrest in years following the death of George Floyd. Floyd was killed in police custody in Minneapolis on 25 May, and his death has underscored the many ways race and ethnic background drives unequal experiences among many Americans. In the 70 years since the US Supreme Court ruled racial segregation of public schools unconstitutional, progress in improving racial educational divides has been slow and uneven.

For people of colour in America, education does not provide the same economic return as it might for other groups. People of colour, particularly women of colour, typically have lower salaries than white and male workers with similar levels of education. Income inequality is also stifling intergenerational mobility — the American Dream of children having a higher standard of living than their parents. But for people born in this chance had fallen to half. Outsized unemployment burdens A lack of access to higher education or skilled work can make people of colour more vulnerable to unemployment during downturns and periods of economic growth.

As researchers explained in one report from The Russell Sage Foundation and The Stanford Center on Poverty and Inequality: "An African American cannot count on education as providing the same relief against the risk of unemployment that it provides to other groups. Life expectancy gaps between white Americans and people of colour have begun to narrow , but inequities still exist thanks to a range of socio-economic factors such as income inequality, access to health insurance and adequate health care. The disproportionate impact that COVID has had on black Americans demonstrates some of the vulnerabilities the population faces. The imprisonment rate among black Americans has fallen by over a third since , and stands at around 1, prisoners for every , adults.

But black Americans remain far more likely to be in prison than Hispanic and white Americans. The figures are particularly stark among some age groups: in the age bracket about 1 in 20 black men were in state or federal prison in Black Americans made up a third of the sentenced prison population in — nearly triple their representation in the US adult population as a whole. They also make up a disproportionate number of fatal police shootings. The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone and not the World Economic Forum. Research shows that single adults who live in America are more likely to be worse off economically than people who have a partner. Ottawa, Illinois, receives runoff from the Illinois and Fox river watersheds making flooding long a part of life.

The city has worked to limit its impact, though. I accept. Jonathan Kozol s Savage Inequalities described the striking differences between public schools serving students of color in urban settings and their suburban counterparts, which typically spend twice as much per student for populations with many fewer special needs. Contrast MacKenzie High School in Detroit, where word processing courses are taught without word processors because the school cannot afford them, or East St. Louis Senior High School, whose biology lab has no laboratory tables or usable dissecting kits, with nearby suburban schools where children enjoy a computer hookup to Dow Jones to study stock transactions and science laboratories that rival those in some industries. Or contrast Paterson, New Jersey, which could not afford the qualified teachers needed to offer foreign language courses to most high school students, with Princeton, where foreign languages begin in elementary school.

L Linda Darling-Hammond. Even within urban school districts, schools with high concentrations of low-income and minority students receive fewer instructional resources than others. And tracking systems exacerbate these inequalities by segregating many low-income and minority students within schools. In combination, these policies leave minority students with fewer and lower-quality books, curriculum materials, laboratories, and computers; significantly larger class sizes; less qualified and experienced teachers; and less access to high-quality curriculum.

Many schools serving low-income and minority students do not even offer the math and science courses needed for college, and they provide lower-quality teaching in the classes they do offer. It all adds up. Since the Coleman report, Equality of Educational Opportunity, another debate has waged as to whether money makes a difference to educational outcomes. It is certainly possible to spend money ineffectively; however, studies that have developed more sophisticated measures of schooling show how money, properly spent, makes a difference. Over the past 30 years, a large body of research has shown that four factors consistently influence student achievement: all else equal, students perform better if they are educated in smaller schools where they are well known to students is optimal , have smaller class sizes especially at the elementary level , receive a challenging curriculum, and have more highly qualified teachers.

Minority students are much less likely than white children to have any of these resources. In predominantly minority schools, which most students of color attend, schools are large on average, more than twice as large as predominantly white schools and reaching 3, students or more in most cities ; on average, class sizes are 15 percent larger overall 80 percent larger for non-special education classes ; curriculum offerings and materials are lower in quality; and teachers are much less qualified in terms of levels of education, certification, and training in the fields they teach.

After controlling for socioeconomic status, the large disparities in achievement between black and white students were almost entirely due to differences in the qualifications of their teachers. In combination, differences in teacher expertise and class sizes accounted for as much of the measured variance in achievement as did student and family background figure 1. Ferguson and Duke economist Helen Ladd repeated this analysis in Alabama and again found sizable influences of teacher qualifications and smaller class sizes on achievement gains in math and reading.

They found that more of the difference between the high- and low-scoring districts was explained by teacher qualifications and class sizes than by poverty, race, and parent education. Meanwhile, a Tennessee study found that elementary school students who are assigned to ineffective teachers for three years in a row score nearly 50 percentile points lower on achievement tests than those assigned to highly effective teachers over the same period. Strikingly, minority students are about half as likely to be assigned to the most effective teachers and twice as likely to be assigned to the least effective. Minority students are put at greatest risk by the American tradition of allowing enormous variation in the qualifications of teachers.

Students in poor or predominantly minority schools are much less likely to have teachers who are fully qualified or hold higher-level degrees. In schools with the highest minority enrollments, for example, students have less than a 50 percent chance of getting a math or science teacher with a license and a degree in the field. In , fully one-third of teachers in high-poverty schools taught without a minor in their main field and nearly 70 percent taught without a minor in their secondary teaching field. Studies of underprepared teachers consistently find that they are less effective with students and that they have difficulty with curriculum development, classroom management, student motivation, and teaching strategies.

Nor are they likely to see it as their job to do so, often blaming the students if their teaching is not successful. Teacher expertise and curriculum quality are interrelated, because a challenging curriculum requires an expert teacher. Research has found that both students and teachers are tracked: that is, the most expert teachers teach the most demanding courses to the most advantaged students, while lower-track students assigned to less able teachers receive lower-quality teaching and less demanding material.

Assignment to tracks is also related to race: even when grades and test scores are comparable, black students are more likely to be assigned to lower-track, nonacademic classes. Analyses of national data from both the High School and Beyond Surveys and the National Educational Longitudinal Surveys have demonstrated that, while there are dramatic differences among students of various racial and ethnic groups in course-taking in such areas as math, science, and foreign language, for students with similar course-taking records, achievement test score differences by race or ethnicity narrow substantially.

In a comparative study of Chicago first graders, for example, Dreeben found that African-American and white students who had comparable instruction achieved comparable levels of reading skill. But he also found that the quality of instruction given African-American students was, on average, much lower than that given white students, thus creating a racial gap in aggregate achievement at the end of first grade. These children, though, learned less during first grade than their white counterparts because their teacher was unable to provide the challenging instruction they deserved. When schools have radically different teaching forces, the effects can be profound.

For example, when Eleanor Armour-Thomas and colleagues compared a group of exceptionally effective elementary schools with a group of low-achieving schools with similar demographic characteristics in New York City, roughly 90 percent of the variance in student reading and mathematics scores at grades 3, 6, and 8 was a function of differences in teacher qualifications. The schools with highly qualified teachers serving large numbers of minority and low-income students performed as well as much more advantaged schools. Most studies have estimated effects statistically.

Another study compared African-American high school youth randomly placed in public housing in the Chicago suburbs with city-placed peers of equivalent income and initial academic attainment and found that the suburban students, who attended largely white and better-funded schools, were substantially more likely to take challenging courses, perform well academically, graduate on time, attend college, and find good jobs. This state of affairs is not inevitable. Twelve states are now working directly with the commission on this agenda, and others are set to join this year. Several pending bills to overhaul the federal Higher Education Act would ensure that highly qualified teachers are recruited and prepared for students in all schools.

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