Thousands of people are gathering in Sacramento this week to look for ways to close the gap. State Schools Superintendent Jack O’Connell says it’s been an elusive goal:
“Over the last five years we have not narrowed the achievement gap at all. And you can hold me accountable.”
O’Connell says the gap is not due strictly to socio-economic differences. He notes low-income white students still have better test scores than Black and Latino students from more affluent families. He says it could be cultural insensitivity, or a lack of pre-school. He says a systemic change is needed:
“I really do hope that we can arm or prepare our professional education community, the business community, the labor community, the parental community with the skills necessary to close the gaps in their unique areas.”
Teachers, parents and researchers are among the four-thousand expected to attend the achievement gap summit.