Professor of Education Sean Reardon recently published a controversial New York Times opinion piece titled "No Rich Child Left Behind," in which he detailed his research on the widening achievement gap between students from high- and low-income families. Reardon spoke with The Daily about the feedback he has received on the piece and his thoughts on how the achievement gap can be narrowed.
Congratulations to Jon Valant for receiving the Spencer Foundation Dissertation Fellowship 2013-2014. Jon is a doctoral candidate in Educational Policy at Stanford University. He studies education policies and politics as they relate to K-12 achievement gaps. He is particularly interested in school choice in urban settings, both with respect to how families choose schools and how schools of choice serve their students.
Here’s a fact that may not surprise you: the children of the rich perform better in school, on average, than children from middle-class or poor families. Students growing up in richer families have better grades and higher standardized test scores, on average, than poorer students; they also have higher rates of participation in extracurricular activities and school leadership positions, higher graduation rates and higher rates of college enrollment and completion.
"It is well-known that teachers systematically sort across schools, disadvantaging low-income, minority and low-achieving students," said Demetra Kalogrides, a research associate at the Graduate School of Education's Center for Education Policy Analysis and one of the study's three authors. "Our findings are novel because they address the assignment of teachers to classes within schools. We cannot assume that teacher sorting stops at the school doors."
The Graduate School of Education and the Office of the Vice Provost for Online Learning are partnering to advance research on how people learn.
Mitchell Stevens, associate professor of education, has been appointed to a newly created position — director of digital research and planning — in which he will help bridge research efforts in the Office of the Vice Provost of Online Learning and the Graduate School of Education. This is a two-year appointment effective immediately.
A little pocket of Los Angeles County tucked into the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains reflects a crucial facet of suburban life. There’s tiny, wealthy Bradbury, a town that prides itself on having one of the richest ZIP codes in Los Angeles, where a house is on the market for $68.8 million. A couple of miles to the east is Azusa. This modest suburb is more than two-thirds Latino, a town of working families whose incomes and home values are a sliver of the wealth nearby.
Stanford faculty members share their online education experiences. "It's the beginning of a wholesale reorganization of teaching and learning in higher education," said Mitchell Stevens, associate professor of education and co-convener of Education's Digital Future, a hub of academic discussion around these issues. "It will very soon be an unignorable phenomenon. This is not a fringe activity. This is something that will be reorganizing the entire sector."
A new study finds that when low-income, high-achieving students get targeted information about their full range of college-going opportunities, they apply to selective colleges in larger numbers, attend and graduate.
sean reardon of Stanford University and Andrew Ho of Harvard University are the 2013 recipients of the Palmer O. Johnson Award for the article, Estimating Achievement Gaps From Test Scores Reported in Ordinal 'Proficiency' Categories, published in the Journal of Educational and Behavioral Statistics in August 2012. This award is to be given for an outstanding article appearing in an AERA-sponsored publication.
Eric Hanushek and Paul Peterson discuss how aligning teacher salaries with effectiveness is necessary to improve the efficiency of school spending. Paying teachers according to effectiveness is particularly important when faced with budget pressures.
“This changes almost everything,” said Michael Kirst, president of the California State Board of Education and professor emeritus at the Stanford Graduate School of Education, in opening his testimony on March 13 before the California State Senate Education Committee. And he then listed examples of the new deeper learning standards that are to be adopted: “Students will be able to understand, describe, explain, justify, prove, derive, assess, illustrate, analyze, model, construct, compare, investigate, summarize and evaluate — those are some of them.”
Editor’s Note: California Gov. Jerry Brown has proposed a new formula for funding the state’s public schools. Known as the Local Control Funding Formula, the plan seeks to address glaring inequities plaguing the current K-12 school finance system. In 2008, State Board of Education President Michael Kirst co-authored a policy brief that became the foundation for Brown’s proposed formula.