AFFLUENT STUDENTS HAVE major advantages when it comes to K-12 education: Among them, better teachers, more access to advanced courses, resources for counselors and a variety of extracurricular activities, which when combined can lead to higher high school graduation and college-going rates than their poorer peers.
Now those wealthy students can add to that list another advantage their less affluent peers don’t receive: grade inflation.
A new study on grade inflation published Wednesday shows that schools attended by more affluent students saw less rigorous grading than schools attended by less affluent ones. While median grade point averages increased in both school types between 2005 and 2016, it increased more in the more affluent schools.
“In other words, it’s gotten easier to get a good grade in more affluent schools, but not in less affluent ones,” says Seth Gershensen, associate professor at American University who conducted the research and authored the report. “The GPA Gap has widened.”
There are now well over 1,000 colleges and universities that don’t require SAT or ACT scores in deciding whom to admit, a number that’s growing every year. And a new study finds that scores on those tests are of little value in predicting students’ performance in college, and raises the question: Should those tests be required at all?
Colleges that have gone “test optional” enroll — and graduate — a higher proportion of low-income and first generation-students, and more students from diverse backgrounds, the researchers found in the study, Defining Access: How Test-Optional Works.
“Our research clearly demonstrates that these students graduate often at a higher rate,” said Steve Syverson, an assistant vice chancellor at the University of Washington Bothell, and co-author of the study.
Burnout among young teachers appears to be contagious, indicates a new study led by Michigan State University education scholars.
The study found a significant link between burnout among early-career teachers and exposure to both a school-wide culture of burnout and burnout among the young teachers’ closest circle of colleagues.
Surprisingly, the link was stronger to the school-wide culture of burnout than it was to burnout among close colleagues.
“If you are surrounded by people who are downcast or walking around under a pall of burnout, then it has a high chance of spilling over, even if you don’t have direct contact with these folks,” said Kenneth Frank, professor of measurement and quantitative methods in MSU’s College of Education.
Today, the Trump administration released the FY 2018 Budget Blueprint: A Blueprint to Make America Great Again. This blueprint meets the President’s promises to support our military, prioritize border security, veterans’ health care, and school choice, and to eliminate hundreds of redundant, overlapping or ineffective programs.
U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos issued the following statement:
“Today’s Budget Blueprint keeps with President Trump’s promise to focus the U.S. Department of Education on its mission to serve students. The budget places power in the hands of parents and families to choose schools that are best for their children by investing an additional $1.4 billion in school choice programs. It continues support for the nation’s most vulnerable populations, such as students with disabilities, while streamlining and simplifying funding for college and continuing to help make college education more affordable.
Pursuing high-quality post secondary education is one of the most important investments a student can make, and is the surest path to the middle class in our country. Americans with college degrees are more likely to live healthier lives, be more civically engaged in their communities, have good-paying jobs, and experience greater job security. America’s students, families, and economic strength depend on a higher education system that helps everyone succeed. Achieving this goal requires making college more accessible and affordable—especially for historically underserved students—and ensuring that students graduate in a timely way with a meaningful degree that sets them up to thrive in careers and life.
That is why the Obama Administration has taken strong actions since 2009 to offset the rising costs of higher education, including expanding Pell Grants—federal financial aid offered to undergraduate students from lower-income families—and making student debt more manageable.
“In America, opportunity can never be rationed. It cannot be a perk set aside for some and denied to others. Opportunity must be available to all. Opportunity and education are not only the foundation of our economy, they are also the foundation of our democracy and the American way of life.” – U.S. Education Secretary John B. King Jr.
President Barack Obama entered office in 2009 with a comprehensive vision for improving our education system to advance our children’s opportunity and success. That vision included efforts to address the dropout crisis, improve student achievement, and increase graduation rates; expand equity in education through stronger schools; give more of our youngest learners access to high-quality early childhood education; ensure all students achieve high standards that prepare them for college and career; grow innovation and investment in what works, while safeguarding the right of all students to a world-class education; and have the opportunity to complete an affordable high-quality college education.