The Facts of the Matter
The Facts of the Matter
Why the Black-White Achievement Gap Is
A Real Problem for All Americans
- Based on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), widely known as the Nation’s Report Card from the U.S. Department of Education, the black-white achievement gap is apparent as early as kindergarten and grows as students move through the grades.
- According to the most recent NAEP findings, in 2007 only 14 percent of black fourth graders were proficientreaders—that is, performing at or above their grade’s reading level—compared with 43 percent of white fourth graders. Among eighth graders, only 13 percent of black students were proficient readers, compared with 40 percent of white students.
- Based on NAEP results for 2007, 64 percent of black fourth graders performed at or above the basic level of math proficiency, compared with 91 percent of white fourth graders. That same year, just 11 percent of black eighth graders performed at or above the proficient level in math, compared with 42 percent of white eighth graders.
- For the class of 2002 nationally, high school graduation rates were 78 percent for white students compared with 56 percent for black students, based on the analysis of Manhattan Institute researcher Jay Greene. On the strength of core criteria, including basic literacy skills, only 23 percent of black members of the class of ’02 were deemed “college ready,” compared with 40 percent of their white peers.
- According to data from The College Board, the gap in average SAT composite scores between black and white students increased from 1998 (194 points) to 2008 (209 points).
- Based on studies of college enrollment and completion rates, young white adults are approximately twice as likely as their black peers to earn a college degree.
- According to expert calculations from census data, dropouts are almost twice as likely as high school graduates to land in prison at some point in their lives, and people who never go to college are more than three times as likely as college graduates to be incarcerated. Improving the high school graduation and college enrollment rates for young African American males directly translates into fewer African American men in prison each year.
- Low income, lack of health care, higher crime rates, and many other factors connected to education combine to shorten the lives of African Americans. To put it bluntly, the black-white achievement gap kills—and so does the indifference of those who could be doing something about it, but aren’t.
For more information contact The B&B Media Group
Audra Jennings firstname.lastname@example.org