Black Education Achievement Gap

As a student and someone who is interested in the education system this is a great perspective on what and why might be lacking in the US education system. It also hints on the original reason why a general education curriculum was established in America–to unify and help assimilate new immigrants as well as anyone who did not immediately or could never be apart of mainstream America.



The following is mainly based on the second chapter of Beverly Daniel Tatum’s “Can We Talk About Race? And Other Conversations in an Era of School Resegregation” (2007):

The black education achievement gap is where blacks in America score lower on tests of school achievement than whites. This is unsurprising where black schools are underfunded, but it is true even where blacks and whites go to the same school. Why? Tatum:

1. Ideas about intelligence:

  • as hereditary and fixed from birth,
  • as measurable by IQ tests.

Americans get these ideas from the early 1900s when scientific racism was respectable and mainstream. These ideas were supported by one of the great scientific hoaxes of the 1900s: Sir Cyril Burt’s studies on twins separated at birth – where he made up the numbers! Burt’s work was used by Arthur Jensen in 1969 to discredit Head Start. “The Bell Curve” (1994) pretty much…

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