The Rich Get Richer (And The Test Scores Prove It)

rich-poor-gap

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Unsurprisingly, students from wealthy families

  • Participate in more extracurricular activities
  • Hold more school leadership positions
  • Have higher graduation rates
  • Higher college enrollment rates
  • And, higher college completion rates

Than students from middle or lower income families

Race predicts school performance too.

[black/white performance gap]
[year, age of kids, subject, score gap]
1971-9-reading-44
1975-9-reading-35
1988-9-reading-29
1973-9-math-35
1978-9-math-32
1986-9-math-25
1971-13-reading-39
1980-13-reading-32
1988-13-reading-18
1973-13-math-46
1982-13-math-34
1986-13-math-24
1971-17-reading-53
1980-17-reading-50
1984-17-reading-32
1973-17-math-40
1982-17-math-32
1990-17-math-21

But the race achievement gap is narrowing.

The middle/lower family income achievement gap is narrowing too.

Thanks to programs like:

  • Head Start
  • Title 1

1945-45%
1955-50%
1965-53%
1975-55%
1985-50%
1995-45%
2005-43%

But the rich are outpacing us all.

[Math achievement gap for 90/10 percentiles of income]
[year, % higher 90% is than 10%]
1945-75%
1955-100%
1965-95%
1975-85%
1985-110%
1995-120%
2005-125%

The rich/poor achievement gap has widened by 40% in the last 50 years.

In the 80’s SAT score gap for rich/poor

90 points
Today it’s 125 points.

[Reading achievement gap for 90/10 percentiles of income]
[year, % higher 90% is than 10%]
1945-60%
1955-80%
1965-80%
1975-85%
1985-100%
1995-115%
2005-120%

Due to rising costs of quality education those who can spend more on education excel

White households make 60% more than black households
Hispanic households make 30% more than black households

And it shows in admissions to highly competitive schools

[acceptance rate to highly selective colleges by income percentile]
[year, race, income percentile, % in highly selective colleges]

2004
White-20%-2.5%
White-40%-4%
White-60%-5%
White-80%-10%
White-95%-23%
Black-20%-1%
Black-40%-1.5%
Black 60%-2%
Black 80%-3%
Black 95%-4%
Hispanic-20%-3%
Hispanic-40%-3%
Hispanic-60%-3%
Hispanic-80%-5%
Hispanic-95%-15%

1992
White-20%-2.5%
White-40%-3%
White-60%-3%
White-80%-7%
White-95%-30%
Black-20%-.5%
Black-40%-2%
Black-60%-3%
Black-80%-5%
Black-95%-10%
Hispanic-20%-3%
Hispanic-40%-5%
Hispanic-60%-6%
Hispanic-80%-7%
Hispanic-95%-17%

1982
White-20%-2.5%
White-40%-3%
White-60%-5%
White 80%-7%
White-95%-16%
Black-20%-2%
Black-40%-2%
Black-60%-3%
Black-80%-3%
Black-95%-6%
Hispanic-20%-2%
Hispanic-40%-2%
Hispanic-60%-3%
Hispanic-80%-4.5%
Hispanic-95%-8%

Where graduates have much higher lifetime earning potential, and can keep the money in the family.

Sources:

http://www.ets.org/Media/Research/pdf/PICBWGAP.pdf
http://www.boldapproach.org/uploads/db_files/reardon%20whither%20opportunity%20-%20chapter%20599.pdf
http://www.census.gov/compendia/statab/2012/tables/12s0690.pdf
http://cepa.stanford.edu/sites/default/files/race%20income%20%26%20selective%20college%20enrollment%20august%203%202012.pdf
http://nces.ed.gov/nationsreportcard/pdf/studies/2009495.pdf

richedugap-thumb