Examining the achievement gap between white and black students in Alabama

July 07, 2017

By Trisha Powell Crain


Stanford's Educational Opportunity Monitoring Project has dug deeply into available data, searching for what other factors beyond poverty might be influencing the black-white achievement gap.

Researcher Sean Reardon studied the multiple factors that contribute to the gap, using more than 200 million test scores from schools and districts across the country.

Reardon and his fellow researchers wanted to see which factors are most closely correlated with the achievement gap. They looked at two sets of factors that account for about three-fourths of the gap.

The first set has to do with a student's family resources, residential segregation and neighborhood factors.

The second set has to do with education policies and practices, including school segregation, disparities between schools and also within schools.