Inequity in Education is Your (and My) Responsibility

By Kate Gerson ~ Getting Smart

There is a great injustice happening in our schools, and it’s happening on our watch. What’s happening can be seen in national reports. The reading and math scores of our white students continue to be higher than the scores of our black and Latino students. In fact, the 30+ point gap between these groups’ National NAEP reading scores has been virtually unchanged since 1990. ACT scores show that black, Latino, and native American high school graduates are particularly unprepared for college, with less than half meeting three or more preparedness benchmarks. The popular way of framing these numbers is that they represent an “achievement gap.”

But that couldn’t be further from the truth. This is not a gap that belongs to the students. This is a gap that we, the adults, are providing. This is a provision gap. It’s on us.

I started with these numbers because as a former teacher and principal, as well as a longtime advocate for racial equity, I know these statistics are more than numbers—they are actual children. These are the children who will soon be adults living in a complicated political landscape, a constantly evolving global economy, and a world with many intellectual demands.

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