Inequity is THE Problem in Education

By The Hewlett Foundation ~

Deeper Learning. Linked Learning. Blended Learning. Personalized Learning. Student-centered Learning. Project-based learning. Social and emotional learning. And the list goes on (and on). There are literally hundreds of education initiatives—and an equal number of philanthropic strategies—designed to improve our education system. In my time as fellow at the Hewlett Foundation, I have come to realize the importance of putting equity first, ahead of any other goal or initiative. For all of us who have devoted our careers to serving children, our greatest responsibility is to create a world in which every child, regardless of her race, income, or ZIP code, has the same chance to attend excellent schools, graduate from college, and fulfill her potential.

Why focus on equity? One graph tells the story:

The gap in college attainment by income group is growing. College attainment for children from the poorest families has barely risen—from an abominable 6% to a still unconscionable 9%—in 45 years. As you might imagine, the income achievement gap doesn’t begin in college, but exists at every level of the education system: from before kindergarten through high school.

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