School Poverty Data Highlighted in The Atlantic

03 Mar 2016 | Abigail Langston
School Poverty Data Highlighted in The Atlantic

In a recent story in The Atlantic, Janie Boschma and Ronald Brownstein use new data from the National Equity Atlas to explore the racial concentration of school poverty. In “The Concentration of Poverty in American Schools,” Boschma and Brownstein note that in about half of the nation’s largest 100 cities, most Black and Latino students go to schools where at least 75 percent of all students qualify as poor or low-income. They write,

“This systemic economic and racial isolation looms as a huge obstacle for efforts to make a quality education available to all American students. Researchers have found that the single-most powerful predictor of racial gaps in educational achievement is the extent to which students attend schools surrounded by other low-income students.”

Percent of students by school poverty level: United States, 2014

The authors discuss the root causes of concentrated poverty as well as promising school integration models from Dallas and New York City as strategies to address these gaps. The Atlantic also cites the National Equity Atlas’s school poverty indicator in the stories “Separate and Still Unequal” and “Where Children Rarely Escape Poverty.”