Achievement First: A High-Performing Network of Charter Schools Faces Political and Patron Pressures

Achievement First: A High-Performing Network of Charter Schools Faces Political and Patron Pressures

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Abstract

For decades, the educational establishment had argued that the persistent achievement gap between the test scores of minority inner-city youths and suburban kids could not be leveled by creating better inner city schools. Poor educational performance, it was asserted, was the result of low socioeconomic status (SES) and until the social and economic conditions of the inner city improved, poor city students would score lower on the standardized tests that determine so many of life's opportunities. At the margin, inner city schools could help a few students gain better opportunities, but for the most part, educational elites believed SES was destiny.

And yet, on the edges of a warehouse district in New Haven, Connecticut, an intrepid group of educational pioneers were turning this conventional theory on ...

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