Fighting Education Inequality


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Fighting Education Inequality: Segregation in K-12 Schooling & Legacy Preferences in Higher Education. A talk by Richard D. Kahlenberg, Senior Fellow, The Century Foundation , November 10, 2011 at the Education Law Association, Chicago, Illinois

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  • 50 th Anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education. A number of discouraging articles about the resegregation of American schools
  • What you see here is when you compare children living public housing who attended green zone schools to those who attended red zone schools, the gap is even bigger. Essentially, the positive impact of attending low-poverty schools outweighed the district’s strategy of extra resources directed to it’s neediest elementary schools. And the district’s investments in its red zone schools are those that have been supported by research.
  • Fighting Education Inequality

    1. 1. Fighting Education Inequality: Segregation in K-12 Schooling & Legacy Preferences in Higher Education <ul><li>Richard D. Kahlenberg, Senior Fellow, </li></ul><ul><li>The Century Foundation </li></ul><ul><li>November 10, 2011 </li></ul><ul><li>Education Law Association </li></ul><ul><li>Chicago, Illinois </li></ul>
    2. 2. School Integration in the U.S. <ul><li>Continuum of Voluntary Racial and Socioeconomic Plans </li></ul><ul><li>Most Racial Diversity Guaranteed </li></ul><ul><li>Least Legally Sustainable </li></ul><ul><li>Least Racial Diversity Guaranteed </li></ul><ul><li>Most Legally Sustainable </li></ul>Race Only Neither Race nor SES <ul><li>Old Louisville Plan </li></ul><ul><li>Old Seattle Plan </li></ul><ul><li>13,000 + districts </li></ul>Use both Race & SES <ul><li>New Louisville Plan </li></ul><ul><li>Berkeley </li></ul>SES with race as “last resort” <ul><li>Cambridge </li></ul>SES Only <ul><li>Omaha </li></ul><ul><li>Champaign </li></ul>
    3. 3. Districts Pursuing Socioeconomic Integration Today <ul><li>80 U.S. Districts, educating 4 million students, using socioeconomic status as a factor in student assignment. Examples: </li></ul><ul><li>Cambridge, MA. All schools should fall within + or – 10 percentage points of district average for free and reduced price lunch (40%). </li></ul><ul><li>Chicago, IL. 85% low-income so begin by integrating a subset of magnet and selective schools, with the goal of integrating more as middle-class return. </li></ul>
    4. 4. Racial vs. Socioeconomic Integration <ul><li>Socioeconomic integration produces significant racial diversity in a manner that’s perfectly legal </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Among 4 th graders nationally, 24% whites eligible free and reduced lunch; 70% African Americans; 73% Latinos </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Graduated income tax legally fine by income, not by race. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Enormous benefits to preserving racial integration. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Not just a clumsy proxy. Research: Academic benefits of integration not from proximity to whiteness but middle-class environment </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Racial Desegregation in Charlotte vs. Boston (1970s) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Roosevelt Perry Elementary in Louisville. </li></ul></ul>
    5. 5. Classmate Characteristics, by School or Student SES a Percentage of schools reporting student acts of disrespect for teachers in classrooms at least once per week. High-poverty refers to schools with 50 percent or more of their students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch; and low-poverty refers to schools with 20% or less of their students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch. b Percentage of students who have attended two or more schools between first and third grades. High-poverty refers to the study’s lowest family income group (family income is less than $10,000). Low-poverty refers to the study’s highest family income group (family income is $50,000 or more). c Number of words in student’s vocabulary by 36 months of age. High-poverty means child is part of a family receiving welfare, and low-poverty means child is part of a professional family. Source: Rachel Dinkes, Emily Forrest Cataldi, and Wendy Lin-Kelly, Indicators of School Crime and Safety: 2008 , National Center for Education Statistics, U.S. Department of Education and U.S. Department of Justice, Washington, D.C., December 2008, Table 7.2, p. 99 (teacher disrespect); U.S. General Accounting Office, Elementary School Children: Many Change Schools Frequently, Harming Their Education (Washington, DC: U.S. General Accounting Office, 1994) (mobility); and Paul Barton and Richard Coley, Windows on Achievement and Inequality (Princeton, NJ: Educational Testing Service, 2008), p. 9, Figure 2 (vocabulary).
    6. 6. Parental Involvement, by Student SES Source: 1988 National Educational Longitudinal Study data on PTA membership cited in Richard D. Kahlenberg, All Together Now (Washington, DC: Brookings Institution Press, 2001), p. 62; National Center for Education Statistics, Parent and Family Involvement in Education, 2006-07 School Year , August 2008, p. 9, Table 3 (volunteer and committee service). NCES considers students living in households with incomes below the poverty threshold to be poor, or low-SES. Both studies gauge parental involvement based on the socioeconomic status of students—not schools.
    7. 7. Teaching Quality, by School SES Source : U.S. Department of Education, The Condition of Education 2008 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 2008), p. 51; Richard M. Ingersoll, cited in “Parsing the Achievement Gap,” Educational Testing Service, 2003, p. 11; Linda Darling-Hammond, “Doing What Matters Most: Investing in Quality Teaching,” National Commission on Teaching and America’s Future, 1997, pp. 25–27.
    8. 8. Salary Increase Needed to Counteract Turnover Effects Caused by Differences in Student Characteristics Between Large Urban and Suburban Districts, by Experience Class of Teacher (for Female, Nonminority Teachers) Source: Eric A. Hanushek, John F. Kain, and Steven G. Rivkin, “Why Public Schools Lose Teachers,” Journal of Human Resources 39:2 (2004): 326-54.
    9. 9. KIPP <ul><li>Tremendously Successful High Poverty Schools </li></ul><ul><li>Scalable? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Self-selected students. Turnaround in Denver Failed. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>60% Attrition in San Francisco schools. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Parents who sign statements committing to read to their children every night </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Crazy hours for teachers; 49% attrition in San Francisco area schools. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Generous funding </li></ul></ul>
    10. 10. Bay Area KIPP Net Student Enrollment by Grade Level, from 2003-04 to 2006-07 Note: Although 24% of the original fifth cohort left during or immediately after the school year, roughly 82 new students entered in sixth grade, a common year for making the transition from elementary to middle school. Source : Katrina R. Woodworth, Jane L. David, Roneeta Guha, Haiwen Wang, and Alejandra Lopez-Torkos, “San Francisco Bay Area KIPP Schools: A Study of Early Implementation and Achievement: Final Report,” Center for Education Policy, SRI International, Menlo Park, California, 2008, pp. 12-15, esp. see Exhibit 2-3 on p. 13. The study cites data from the California Department of Education. Four of the five Bay Area KIPP schools are included in this graph; enrollment numbers from the Heartwood Academy are excluded because it began a year later than the other schools and, accordingly, does not have a 2003 cohort of students progressing through these grades in the same timeframe.
    11. 11. Impact of Charter Schools on Math Gains in 15 States and D.C. Source: “Multiple Choice: Charter School Performance in 16 States,” Center for Research on Education Outcomes (CREDO), Stanford University, Stanford, CA, June 2009, p. 44, Table 9.
    12. 12. Percentage of Public Schools That are Persistently High-Performing, by SES Note : High-poverty is defined as at least 50 percent of students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch; low-poverty is defined as fewer than 50 percent eligible. High-performing is defined as being in the top third in the state in two subjects, in two grades, and over a two-year period. Source : Douglas N. Harris, “Ending the Blame Game on Educational Inequity: A study of ‘High Flying’ Schools and NCLB,” Educational Policy Studies Laboratory, Arizona State University, March 2006, p. 20.
    13. 13. National Assessment of Educational Progress 2007, 4th Grade Math Results Source: U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences, National Center for Education Statistics, National Assessments of Educational Progress (NAEP), 2007 Math Assessment, Grade 4.
    14. 14. 40 Years of Research <ul><li>1966 Coleman Report: SES of family the biggest predictor of achievement; SES of school the second biggest predictor. </li></ul><ul><li>2006 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) for 15 year olds in science showed a “clear advantage in attending a school whose students are, on average, from more advantaged socioeconomic backgrounds.” Finland least economically segregated </li></ul><ul><li>2006 Douglas Harris CAP study: Math data from 18 million students found minority students have greater gains in racially integrated schools and that “a substantial portion of the ‘racial composition’ effect is really due to poverty and peer achievement.” </li></ul>
    15. 15. Montgomery County, MD 2010 Research <ul><li>RAND researcher Heather Schwartz’s Century Foundation study: “Housing Policy is School Policy: Economically Integrative Housing Promotes Academic Success in Montgomery County, Maryland” </li></ul><ul><li>Tests the effectiveness to two strategies: extra resources (class size reduction, professional development, extended learning time) in high poverty “red zone” schools ($2,000 more/pupil) vs. “inclusionary housing” policy that allows low-income students to attend low poverty “green zone” schools with fewer resources. </li></ul><ul><li>Examined 858 children randomly assigned to public housing units scattered throughout Montgomery County and enrolled in Montgomery County public elementary schools 2001-2007. </li></ul>
    16. 16. Public Housing Students in Green Zone Schools Outperformed Those in Red Zone Schools Source: Heather Schwartz, Housing Policy Is School Policy: Economically Integrative Housing Promotes Academic Success in Montgomery County, Maryland (New York: The Century Foundation, 2010), p. 24, Figure 6.
    17. 17. Montgomery County Study <ul><li>Low-income public housing students in low poverty schools performed at .4 of a standard deviation better in math than low-income public housing students in higher poverty schools with more resources </li></ul><ul><li>Low-income students in green zone schools cut their large initial math gap with middle-class students in half. The reading gap was cut by one-third </li></ul><ul><li>Most of the effect (2/3) was due to attending low-poverty schools, and some (1/3) due to living in low-poverty neighborhoods </li></ul>
    18. 18. Effect of Socioeconomic Integration on Middle-Class Students <ul><li>No research findings of negative effects on academic achievement in integrated environments </li></ul><ul><li>Numbers matter: numerical majority sets tone </li></ul><ul><li>Differential sensitivity to schooling </li></ul><ul><li>Benefits of learning in a diverse environment </li></ul>
    19. 19. Effect on High School Graduation: Cambridge, Massachusetts, and Boston Four-Year Cohort Graduation Rates, 2008 Source: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, Cohort 2008 Four-Year Graduation Rates – State Results, <>.
    20. 20. Chance of Adult Poverty, by School SES (Controlling for Individual Ability and Family Home Environment) Source: Claude S. Fischer et al., Inequality by Design: Cracking the Bell Curve Myth (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1996), p. 84.
    21. 21. Concluding K-12 Thoughts <ul><li>Poor kids can learn, if given the right environment. </li></ul><ul><li>Poverty and Economic Segregation are the major drivers of inequality, not Teachers and their Unions. </li></ul><ul><li>95% of education reform about making separate but equal work rather than reducing the number of high poverty schools. Research suggests more balance is needed. </li></ul>
    22. 22. Inequality in Higher Education <ul><li>Numerous challenges to affirmative action in the courts ( Bakke , Grutter , now Fisher v. Texas ) </li></ul><ul><li>Numerous challenges to affirmative action through voter initiative or executive order (CA, WA, FL, MI, NE, AZ, now OK) </li></ul><ul><li>Dozens of books and articles on affirmative action (including one by me) </li></ul><ul><li>Little on Legacy Preferences in College Admissions, what we call “Affirmative Action for the Rich.” </li></ul>
    23. 23. Are legacy preferences legal? <ul><li>Chapter by Steve Shadowen and Sozi Tulante </li></ul><ul><li>Only one district court case, discussed legacy in just five sentences. </li></ul><ul><li>Public institutions – may violate 14 th amendment’s “equal protection clause” which is meant to outlaw discrimination based on lineage, of which race is a subset. </li></ul><ul><li>Private institutions – may violate 1866 Civil Rights Act which prohibits “ancestry” discrimination. </li></ul><ul><li>May be litigation in the near future. </li></ul><ul><li>If Fisher v. Texas severely limits affirmative action, may put new pressure on legacy preference. California and Texas A&M abolished legacy after racial affirmative action curtailed. </li></ul>
    24. 24. Issues that will may come up in litigation and public policy discussions over legacy preferences <ul><li>Does it matter who goes to selective colleges? </li></ul><ul><li>How significant are legacy preferences? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the historical originals of preferring alumni children? </li></ul><ul><li>Are legacy preferences consistent with the ideals of a democratic republic? </li></ul><ul><li>Do legacy preferences increase alumni giving? </li></ul><ul><li>How do legacies affect students of color? </li></ul>
    25. 25. Q 1: Does it Matter Who Goes to Selective Colleges and Universities? <ul><li>Higher Spending </li></ul><ul><li>Higher Graduation Rates </li></ul><ul><li>Higher Earnings </li></ul><ul><li>Greater Chance at Leadership </li></ul>
    26. 26. Spending by Selectivity Note: Selectivity is measured by ranking all colleges according to the national percentile that corresponds with each college’s mean SAT or ACT score. Spending is reported in 2007 dollars. Source : Caroline M. Hoxby, The Changing Selectivity of American Colleges, NBER Working Paper 15446 (Cambridge, MA: National Bureau of Economic Research, 2009), 15.
    27. 27. Higher Graduation Rates Note: SAT-equivalent scores are based on SAT scores or equivalent percentile correspondences of ACT scores to SAT equivalence. The correspondence was developed by ETS. Source : Anthony P. Carnevale and Jeff Strohl, “How Increasing College Access Is Increasing Inequality, and What to Do about It,” in Rewarding Strivers: Helping Low-Income Students Succeed in College, Richard D. Kahlenberg, ed., (New York: Century Foundation Press, 2010), 151, Table 3.5. Authors’ analysis of survey data from High School and Beyond, U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, . Data limitations Data limitations
    28. 28. Higher Earnings Note: Dollar amounts are in 2007 dollars. Source : Anthony P. Carnevale and Jeff Strohl, “How Increasing College Access Is Increasing Inequality, and What to Do about It,” in Rewarding Strivers: Helping Low-Income Students Succeed in College, Richard D. Kahlenberg, ed., (New York: Century Foundation Press, 2010), 149, Figure 3.17. Authors’ calculations from Barron’s Selectivity Rankings, various years; National Education Longitudinal Study: Base Year through Fourth Follow-Up, 1988-2000 (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Dept. of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, 2000).
    29. 29. Leadership Note: Undergraduate population data for the 12 schools came from each institution’s website. All population counts are for 2009-2010, except for those from Yale, Cornell, and Northwestern, which are for 2008-2009. Source: Thomas Dye, Who’s Running America? (Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 2002), 148 . Current Population Survey (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Census Bureau and U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2008), available at , retrieved August 24, 2010.
    30. 30. Q 2: How much difference do legacy preferences make? <ul><li>Used in almost ¾ of selective universities and almost all selective colleges. </li></ul><ul><li>Increase chances of admissions substantially. </li></ul>
    31. 31. Increased Chances of Admissions for Legacies in Three Studies Child of Undergraduate Alumnus: Legacy Bonus Legacy Bonus Legacy Bonus 1200 1360 40 % 59.7 % 40 % 85.1 % Source: Thomas J. Espenshade, Chang Y. Chung, and Joan L. Walling, “Admission Preferences for Minority Students, Athletes, and Legacies at Elite Universities,” Social Science Quarterly 85, no. 5 (December 2004): 1431. Source: William G. Bowen, Martin A. Kurzweil and Eugene M. Tobin, Equity and Excellence in American Higher Education (Charlottesville, Va.: University of Virginia Press, 2005), 105-06. Source: Michael Hurwitz, “The Impact of Legacy Status on Undergraduate Admissions at Elite Colleges and Universities,” Economics of Education Review 30, Issue 3 (June 2011): pp.480-492, and Elyse Ashburn, “At Elite Colleges, Legacy Status May Count More Than Was Previously Thought,” The Chronicle of Higher Education, January 5, 2011,
    32. 32. Q 3: What are the Historical Origins of Legacy Preferences? <ul><li>Peter Schmidt’s chapter outlines the rise of legacy preferences after WWI as one way to limit admissions of immigrant students, particularly Jews. </li></ul>
    33. 33. Q 4: Are legacy preferences consistent with the ideals of a Democratic Republic? <ul><li>Michael Lind’s chapter on American experiment in Jeffersonian natural aristocracy vs. Old World’s artificial inherited aristocracy. </li></ul><ul><li>Carlton Larson’s chapter on U.S. Constitution’s prohibition on granting titles of nobility. Concludes legacy preferences are likely to have been viewed by founders as profoundly un-American. </li></ul>
    34. 34. Q 5: Do legacy preferences increase alumni giving? <ul><li>Surprisingly little research to date. </li></ul><ul><li>Chad Coffman’s chapter examines top 100 national universities as identified by U.S. News 1998-2008. </li></ul><ul><li>Those with alumni preferences had higher annual giving ($317 vs. 201) but once control for wealth of alumni, the difference was reduced to $15.39, and was statistically insignificant. </li></ul><ul><li>Concludes that with appropriate controls, “ there is no statistically significant evidence of a causal relationship between legacy-preference policies and total alumni giving at top universities.” </li></ul>
    35. 35. Q5: Alumni giving (cont.) <ul><li>7 institutions dropped legacy preferences during the period of the study and there was “no short-term measurable reduction in alumni giving as a result of abolishing legacy preferences.” </li></ul><ul><li>Of top 10 universities in the world in 2008 according to Shanghai University rankings, four (Caltech, UC Berkeley, Oxford and Cambridge) do not employ legacy preference. </li></ul>
    36. 36. Q 6: What is the effect of legacy preference on students of color? <ul><li>After a generation of affirmative action, is now the wrong time to pull out the rug on legacy preference just as students of color will benefit? </li></ul><ul><li>Chapter by John Brittain and Eric Bloom finds under-represented minorities hurt, not helped, by legacy preferences. </li></ul>
    37. 37. Under-represented Minority Proportions of National Applicant Pool at 18 National Universities, Legacy Pool, and U.S. Population (2005) Source : William G. Bowen, Martin A. Kurzweil, and Eugene M. Tobin, Equity and Excellence in American Higher Education (Charlottesville, VA: Univ. of Virginia Press, 2005), 168 (under-represented minority proportion of entire and legacy applicant pools); applicant pool data from all 18 national schools for which authors had legacy data. U.S. Census Bureau, Population Division, Population Estimates Program, Vintage 2005, July 1, 2005 (minority proportion of U.S. population).
    38. 38. Texas A&M Legacy Admits in 2002 Who Otherwise Would Not Have Been Admitted Source : Todd Ackerman, “Legislators Slam A&M over Legacy Admissions,” Houston Chronicle , Jan 4, 2004, A1.
    39. 39. Expected vs. Actual Black and Hispanic Enrollment at Top 50 Elite Colleges in 2008 Expected proportion is based on the demographic group’s proportion of the traditional college-aged population. The “Top 50 Colleges” refer to the 50 national universities ranked highest by U.S. News & World Report . Source : U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, IPEDS Peer Analysis System, 2008 Four-year, Not-for-profit and Public, Degree-Granting, Title-IV Participating Institutions; U.S. News & World Report: Best Colleges 2008; U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics Digest of Education Statistics (2008), Table 227.
    40. 40. Contact Information <ul><li>Richard D. Kahlenberg </li></ul><ul><li>Senior Fellow </li></ul><ul><li>The Century Foundation </li></ul><ul><li>1333 H Street, N.W. 10 th Floor </li></ul><ul><li>Washington, D.C. 20005 </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
    41. 41. For More Information <ul><li>Richard D. Kahlenberg, All Together Now: Creating Middle Class Schools through Public School Choice (Brookings Press, 2001; paperback, 2003). </li></ul><ul><li>Divided We Fail: Coming Together through Public School Choice: Report of The Century Foundation Task Force on the Common School (Lowell Weicker, Chair) (Century Foundation Press, 2002). </li></ul><ul><li>Jennifer Jellison Holme and Amy Stuart Wells chapter in Improving on No Child Left Behind , ed. by Richard D. Kahlenberg (Century Foundation, 2008). </li></ul><ul><li>Heather Schwartz, “Housing Policy is School Policy” (Century Foundation, 2010). </li></ul><ul><li>Affirmative Action for the Rich: Legacy Preferences in Higher Education , ed. by Richard D. Kahlenberg (Century Foundation, 2010). </li></ul>