Professor Sean Reardon of Stanford University has a fascinating article in the New York Times today (“No Rich Child left Behind”) about what really lies at the root of the growing achievement gap in the American education system.
Here are some of his findings:
- The gap between poor and rich kids is growing.
- The gap is not about race as much as it is about income.
- The gap is not a product of “failing” schools; average American are smarter and perform better than their parents.
- Much of the gap is attributable to early childhood education — especially the challenging and stimulating upbringings that wealthy parents are providing to their pre-school children.
- The gap appears to be self-reinforcing; smarter, higher achieving kids end up with better, higher-paying jobs and the wherewithal to help their children.
- Improving our early childhood parenting may be even more important than improving our schools and teachers.
Read Reardon’s entire article by clicking here. It’s clearly food for thought.