The Equity Line contains original analyses, commentary, and “on the ground” stories of students, parents, educators, and activists all over the nation striving to improve education. It chronicles our efforts, as well as those of partners and friends who are working toward the shared goal of closing gaps.

  • DACA Dreamers

    The Dream Act: Lifting Limitations on Students' Unlimited Potential

    October 19, 2017 by

    Nearly two months have passed since the Trump administration announced plans to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA) and called on Congress to act to protect undocumented children of immigrants. What Congress should do is clear: Pass the Dream Act. Doing so would create a pathway to…

  • Reclaiming the Ground for Our Children

    October 13, 2017 by

    The Baltimore Times recently featured Baltimore City Schools CEO Sonja Santelises and the district’s blueprint for success. The following poem was inspired by her powerful opening address at the start of the school year and the work of educators in Baltimore and beyond who are reclaiming the ground for…

  • Debunking 5 Myths about Affirmative Action

    October 12, 2017 by

    Less than two years after the Supreme Court upheld the Fisher vs. University of Texas case on affirmative action, the Trump administration nevertheless continues to threaten race-based affirmative action, chipping away at education equity. The Department of Justice is currently investigating admissions practices at Harvard University, according to recent…

  • ESSA Planning Process is Complete. What's Next?

    September 29, 2017 by

    By now, most states have submitted their ESSA plans to the U.S. Department of Education for review. Over the last year, The Education Trust has worked closely with state advocates from the business, civil rights, disability rights, and education reform communities to push state policymakers to build an accountability…

  • ACT test

    Behind Student ACT Results Lie Educator Choices

    September 27, 2017 by

    “I must have taken the ACT seven or eight times.” Hailey, a bubbly former cheerleader who graduated fourth in her class from her central Louisiana high school, let out a pained chuckle still heavy with disbelief. She’d set her eyes on scoring a 20 or higher, the score…

  • The Case for Investing in High-Quality Early Learning

    September 22, 2017 by

    Imagine a preschool classroom where every child is engaged in positive social, emotional, and developmental learning activities. Where children are smiling and happy, enjoying the interaction with their teacher and each other — whether they’re delighting in story time or constructing towering cities with colorful building blocks. Where parents are…

  • class assignments

    Classroom Assignments Matter. Here’s Why.

    September 20, 2017 by

    As a former classroom teacher, coach, and literacy specialist, I know the beginning of the school year demands that educators pay attention to a number of competing interests. Let me suggest one thing for teachers to focus on that, above all else, can close the student achievement gap: the rigor…

  • FY18 Appropriations: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly + What’s Next

    September 19, 2017 by

    Over the past two weeks in D.C., there has been a lot of action on the Hill on the appropriations front, the process by which the federal government is funded. The Senate Appropriations Committee passed what is known as the “Labor-H” bill, which includes funding for education, along…

  • Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month

    September 18, 2017 by

    Today marks Chile’s Independence Day and the first full week of Hispanic Heritage Month celebration — a time when classrooms around the country become venues steeped in the rich traditions, culture, and history of places as far away as Tierra del Fuego and the Iberian Peninsula and as near…

  • Dear White People: We’ve Always Had Affirmative Action

    August 22, 2017 by

    “The truth will set you free, but first it will piss you off.”—Gloria Steinem Dear White People, Days ago, I, like many of you, watched in horror the vile display of bigotry and hatred, violence and terror that unfolded in Charlottesville, violating the University of Virginia’s campus…

  • On Charlottesville: Race Matters, But Facts Do Too

    August 15, 2017 by

    Deadly protests this weekend by torch-carrying White nationalists at the University of Virginia and in the city of Charlottesville, Va., serve as a terrible reminder to us all just how much race matters in the United States. When angry crowds of White Americans shout, “You will not replace us…

  • Getting Students Over the AP Finish Line: Hear From Schools Already Doing It

    August 11, 2017 by

    In implementing the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), states are choosing how to measure and hold schools responsible for how well high school students are prepared for success after graduation. So far, more than half of the states that have submitted their ESSA plans to the U.S. Department of…

  • Welcoming Our New Team Members

    August 4, 2017 by

    We are thrilled to announce a number of new additions to our team, as we work toward growing our advocacy efforts across the country. They are: Tia Borders Tia will serve as executive assistant to the president and CEO. She has eight years of experience at the U.S. Department…

  • Pairing Access With Supports to Boost Success in AP

    July 26, 2017 by

    This morning we published our new brief, “Systems for Success: Thinking Beyond Access to AP,” an in-depth examination of two high schools that are not only enrolling more traditionally underserved students in AP courses, but also helping them pass at rates above the national average. The brief highlights Alhambra…

  • Mansur’s Manifesto: How an Aspiring Black Male Teacher Plans to Turn Teaching Into Activism

    July 24, 2017 by

    Anytime I tell people that I am majoring in social studies education, they ask one of two questions: “Where do you want to teach?” or “Why do you want to teach?” Those especially curious ask both. My answer is consistent: I would like to teach in a secondary school serving…

  • Putting Profits Over Students

    July 19, 2017 by

    John B. King Jr., Ed Trust President and CEO and former U.S. Secretary of Education, teamed up with fellow former secretary of education under the Obama administration, Arne Duncan, now managing partner for The Emerson Collective, on an opinion piece for The Hill. The piece examines the Trump administration…

  • To OASIS Leaders in Memphis: ‘This Is Civil Rights Work’

    July 19, 2017 by

    “This is the story of a people, of hopes and dreams, of challenge and change. It is an American story. This story and struggle that started many centuries ago, continues today – with you.” — A Culture of Resistance exhibit, National Civil Rights Museum, Memphis, TN In today’s political climate…

  • Systems for Success: Thinking Beyond Access to Advanced Placement

    July 18, 2017 by and

    When deciding to increase opportunities and participation in Advanced Placement, schools and districts often respond by eliminating prerequisites and opening access to these courses — so if any student wants to enroll, they can. This is an important first step, but far from enough to promote AP success, especially for students…

  • Why I Teach Where I Teach: To Be a Part of the Solution

    July 5, 2017 by

    Sarah Giddings is a National Board Certified teacher in social studies and history with the Washtenaw Educational Options Consortium in Ypsilanti, Michigan, an alternative school serving at-risk youth countywide. She is also an adviser; multi-subject instructor in “Big History,” social studies, and English language arts; and a curriculum…

  • John King, DeRay Mckesson Talk Education and Its Implications for Life and Opportunities Beyond School Walls

    June 29, 2017 by

    There’s a raging debate on health care right now. Issues of access, coverage, and cost are dominating newspaper headlines, social media channels, and even sports radio programming. One thing that’s not being discussed enough, however, is the influence of quality public education on health outcomes. Yet research from…