The Dream Revisited
Discussion 2: Economic Segregation in Schools

Discussion 2: Economic Segregation in Schools

March 2014

The second discussion on The Dream Revisited explores economic segregation in our schools and argues for its continued relevance today. 


  • Economic Segregation in Schools

    by Charles Clotfelter

    In contrast to racial segregation, it may be that economic segregation, such as that I have measured in schools, carries less of the misplaced normative baggage Mary Pattillo addressed in her post. That is, education experts and social observers would be hard-pressed to come up with good things to say about economic segregation. Across schools, economic segregation almost inevitably means unequal access to the best teachers and other resources.


  • Why Economic School Segregation Matters

    by Richard D. Kahlenberg

    Why does socioeconomic school segregation matter?  Clotfelter notes that school poverty concentrations are deeply troubling, in part because “economic segregation almost inevitably means unequal access to the best teachers and other resources.”  Teachers in middle-class schools are far more likely to be experienced and to have greater skills as measured by teacher test scores.  They are most likely to be specifically trained to teach in their subject area, whereas teachers in high-poverty schools are more likely to teach “out of field.” 

  • Talking About Diversity

    by James Ryan

    In this brief post, I want to focus on how we tend to talk about racial and economic segregation at the K-12 level and how this differs markedly from how we talk about the same thing at the university and college level. At the K-12 level, most of the academic—and public—conversation about segregation speaks in terms of costs.

  • Race Remains the American Dilemma

    by Richard Rothstein

    In fact, our schools in Louisville, Seattle and elsewhere are racially imbalanced not because their neighborhoods are de facto imbalanced, but because those neighborhoods were segregated by government policy whose effects endure, structuring the residential opportunities of African Americans.

More Discussions