Countering the efforts of educational reformers—including President Obama and his Race to the Top crew—to blame teachers for student failures, researchers are finding that the growing gap between the affluent and the poor is the real villain.
“As the children of the rich do better in school, and those who do better in school are more likely to become rich, we risk producing an even more unequal and economically polarized society,” wrote Sean Reardon, a Stanford University professor of education and sociology.
Louis Freedberg, executive director of the respected public education research organization EdSource, called Reardon’s research a “dramatic illustration of the impact of inequality on how children do in school.” The findings were included in a story in The New York Times on Feb. 9 on the academic achievement gap between rich and poor. The story brought to wide public attention an important part of the income inequality debate that has been generally overlooked.
Read More: Income Inequality Goes to School