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The Growing College-Degree Wealth Gap

Dave_BerryDave_Berry 492 replies2446 discussionsCC Admissions Expert Posts: 2,938 Senior Member
"The nation’s colleges continue to graduate far fewer students who grew up in poor households. With the country’s economic potential possibly hanging in the balance, a new report urges the United States to dedicate more resources and know-how to closing the college-completion gap between wealthier students and those from low-income backgrounds." …

http://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2016/04/the-growing-wealth-gap-in-who-earns-college-degrees/479688/
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Replies to: The Growing College-Degree Wealth Gap

  • TooOld4SchoolTooOld4School 3316 replies12 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 3,328 Senior Member
    @Dave_Berry , thanks for posting this. IMO it is indicative of the wrong-headed thinking typical of the education establishment. This would be a great exercise in critical thinking for HS students .

    Why is it that these reports always call for further expansion of the federal government to pay for more things? Not a word about value and escalating costs, only outcome. How about some innovation to bring costs down to make college and/or vocational training more accessible? How about fixing the K-12 system that is a huge factor in poorer children not attending higher education?

    If 86% of Asians advanced to college, why not determine what those 86% are doing right and emulate it? It seems to me that the solution is politically motivated while the cure is cultural.

    The chart shows the overall distribution by race but appears not to control for age. Older Americans are predominantly white. Younger Americans are predominantly Hispanic, Asian, black, mixed, etc. It's hard to interpret anything when comparing different data sets.

    In the mean time jobs in skilled trades go wanting. Anyone tried to find a plumber lately?
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  • hzhao2004hzhao2004 632 replies2 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 634 Member
    With tuition sky high, what to expect otherwise?
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  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus 76497 replies665 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 77,162 Senior Member
    If 86% of Asians advanced to college, why not determine what those 86% are doing right and emulate it?

    Probably because a high percentage of Asian American kids grow up in households with college-educated parents, because a high percentage of their parents are immigrants who were selected by the immigration system as highly educated or skilled people (within visa categories for PhD students and skilled workers). Something like 50% of Chinese and 70% of Indian immigrants to the US have bachelor's degrees, a far higher percentage than non-immigrant Americans or people in China or India.

    It would not be surprising if you looked at the kids of other (e.g. white or black) college educated immigrants and saw a similar pattern of educational attainment. But they are much less visible, since most people see race/ethnicity first, ignoring actual immigration/generation status and educational attainment.
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  • 4thfloor4thfloor 785 replies66 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 851 Member
    ^ucbalumnus, the relatively high education and wealth of Asians is a fairly recent phenomenon; THEIR parents did not have those advantages yet they still attained relatively high education and wealth. So please don't use that flawed explanation.

    In fact, in New York City, Stuyvesant High Schools is over 60% Asian, yet about half of the students are poor enough to qualify for Federal reduced or free lunch. So TooOld4School is right. Determine what those Asians are doing right and emulate it -- it isn't just the education and wealth of their parents.

    It should be noted that in New York City public schools that use a "portfolio" approach for "holistic admissions", like the Beacon School, there are FEWER Asians. That's because holistic admissions in fact favors the RICH and well-educated, which Asians in New York are not. So please don't attack test-taking (Stuyvesant, which is far poorer than Beacon, is test-based) in this context.
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  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus 76497 replies665 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 77,162 Senior Member
    edited April 2016
    4thfloor wrote:
    In fact, in New York City, Stuyvesant High Schools is over 60% Asian, yet about half of the students are poor enough to qualify for Federal reduced or free lunch.

    https://projects.propublica.org/schools/schools/362058002877 says 37% of Stuyvesant High school students get free or reduced price lunch (versus 49% in New York schools overall). http://insideschools.org/component/schools/school/97 says 45% for Stuyvesant High School.

    Free or reduced price lunch household income thresholds are listed at https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2016-03-23/pdf/2016-06463.pdf . For a household of 4, the income limit is $44,955, or about the 42nd percentile household income. While this may seem "poor" by the standards of many who post here, the percentage of the US population who qualifies for free or reduced price lunch in school is probably a lot higher than most people assume it is.
    edited April 2016
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