Influential Factors Relating to the Achievement Gap

Essay by silvermystA, March 2006

download word file, 6 pages 5.0

Dating back to the signing of the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson stated in words, "All men are created equal." This statement was not relevant in that time before that time, and now, more than 200 years later, this testimonial still holds no truth. This idealist concept, I fear, will never become evident in my duration on earth. People are not created equal. Since the dawn of day there have been dominant groups from the smallest microbes to emperors, kings and slave owners. Even in the wild all animals are not created equal. People are born into families that are either capable of giving necessary survival items and beyond, or they are faced with obstacles that restrain them from reaching their full potential. One of the most controversial concepts in today's education is the reasoning for the "Achievement Gap" amongst our students. Although no one fully understands the exact reasoning for this gap, factors such as home background, differences between schools, and differences within schools greatly influence the educational outcomes of individuals of specific gender, races, and social classes.

The primary elements of the achievement gap are a matter of race and social class. It is evident through intensive studies that there is an obvious gap between academic success amongst minority students, mainly African Americans, and students of Caucasian race. The issues of racial and social inequality have been of controversial discussion and a consistent problem in education for nearly forty years. Throughout these studies, many concepts and theories have arisen that embark upon the possible reasons or explanations for such an apparent variation in achievement. USE A RESOURCE.

Traditionally, schools are expected to reproduce the cultural, political, social, and economic order of society . In other words, we can think of this as an eternal chain of...