Equity-Line-Draft-1-1

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.

  • Black and Proud: MLK, BLM, and Today’s Education Reformers

    August 29, 2016 by

    This piece was originally published in New America’s digital magazine, The New America Weekly.  Sunday marked the 53rd anniversary of the March on Washington and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech. Parts of that speech — specifically, the part that asks for judgement based not…

  • Letting Students Take the Lead

    August 24, 2016 by

    Last school year, our principal invited me to take part in instructional rounds — an observation-based approach to better understand the learning occurring in our Title I elementary school. The reason? To determine why our school was having difficulty meeting various benchmarks on the end-of-year assessments. The goal…

  • What Students Have to Gain From the Arts

    August 15, 2016 by

    “The simple fact is, every child in this country needs and deserves access to the subjects that go into being a well-rounded, well-educated person. Music and art; world language; physics, chemistry, and biology; social studies, civics, geography and government; physical education and health; coding and computer science…

  • Love Isn’t All We Need In America Right Now

    August 10, 2016 by

    In the online comment section under news articles on recent shootings of and by police are missives from pained, well-intentioned Americans, crying various themes of “love is ALL we need” to end racism and bridge the gap of a deeply divided America. And while these pleas to simply love…

  • The $500 Million Club in Higher Ed

    August 4, 2016 by

    A new report we’ve released today shows that just 3.6 percent of colleges and universities — 138 in all — held a whopping 75 percent of all postsecondary endowment wealth in 2013. Because these institutions, which we dub the “$500 million club,” benefit tremendously from their endowments (e.g., no…

  • Letter to America: Achieving Racial Justice Is a Job for All of Us

    July 13, 2016 by

    “Let us all hope that the dark clouds of racial prejudice will soon pass away and the deep fog of misunderstanding will be lifted from our fear drenched communities, and in some not too distant tomorrow the radiant stars of love and brotherhood will shine over our great nation…

  • New Video Highlights Key Components of ESSA

    July 11, 2016 by

    Curious about what’s in the Every Student Succeeds Act, or ESSA, the new education law that replaced No Child Left Behind? Check out our new video that highlights six key components of ESSA that are intended to increase opportunities for learning and improve outcomes for all groups of…

  • Present in the Story of Student Absenteeism

    July 6, 2016 by

    The data on chronic student absenteeism released earlier this month by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights are jaw-dropping. In one school year alone, more than 6 million students — 13 percent of the student population — were considered chronically absent, missing 15 or more school…

  • Want to Know How Well Students Are Performing in Your State? Check Out Our Updated Interactive Tool!

    July 5, 2016 by

    Do you know how well students are performing in your state? Are they faring better or worse than students across the country? Are there other states that you can learn from because they’re either higher performing or faster improving for a particular group of students than your state is…

  • Georgia State: Leading the Way in Student Success

    July 5, 2016 by

    Last week, PBS NewsHour profiled Georgia State University’s efforts to boost success among students of color, those from low-income families, and students who are the first in their families to attend college. Those efforts include early identification systems (which look for red flags that a student is…

  • A Tale of Two Seventh-Graders

    June 27, 2016 by

    The following story is adapted from our Equity in Motion convening, when Sonja Brookins Santelises — our outgoing vice president for K-12 policy and practice, who will become CEO of Baltimore Public Schools this summer — shared the starkly contrasting experiences of two students in Baltimore.      “The powerful play goes on…

  • Classroom Training Wheels Are Not Forever

    June 23, 2016 by

    Our latest analysis of classroom assignments found a troubling mismatch in the level of rigor demanded by high standards and the level asked for in day-to-day assignments given to students. Among the problems we found? Instead of a clear progression in the level of cognitive challenge, too many…

  • Why Assignments Matter

    June 22, 2016 by

    The room was buzzing with the energy of September, although it was late spring. For two days, more than 100 educators came together in Baltimore at our Equity In Motion convening to dig deep into the anatomy of challenging, engaging assignments, to re-energize their practice, and to take their…

  • How Well Are Colleges and Universities Preparing Students to Thrive?

    June 16, 2016 by

    Our College Results Online web tool has been updated with new data and a few new, important variables that can help students and families weigh the investment in a college degree against the return expected down the road. The new variables are: Ten-year post-enrollment earnings. In the past…

  • Between the Echoes: Still They Rose. In Caps and Gowns.

    June 16, 2016 by

    An offshoot of Ed Trust’s Echoes From the Gap series, drawing stories of students from behind the statistics, this blog series shares shorter narratives — brief glimpses into classrooms and hallways — that give readers an opportunity to examine educator practices and policies through the intimate lens of student experience. All…

  • When These Educators Realized What They Were Doing Wasn’t Working, They Changed It

    June 7, 2016 by

    When our children were in high school, my husband and I dutifully attended each of the schools’ open houses. We traipsed through our children’s schedules, spending a few minutes getting a glimpse of the teachers and hearing about their grading and homework policies. It gave us an understanding of…

  • Write the Check: Pell Dollars for Pell Students

    June 2, 2016 by

    Congress is faced with a unique opportunity — an opportunity to make college more affordable for millions of college students by re-investing in Pell Grants. How is this possible given tight budget constraints? In short, as the economy improved, college enrollments declined, bringing the cost of the Pell Grant program…

  • New Initiative Helps Principal Supervisors Provide Much-Needed Support

    June 1, 2016 by

    Too often, principal supervisors — those working in central offices to manage principals across a district — are limited to managing crises and ensuring compliance. They juggle a lot of principals and a lot of policies, which leaves little time or energy for developing strong school leaders through proper coaching and support…

  • How One School District Is Addressing Teacher Retention

    May 26, 2016 by

    This post looks at the underlying causes that contribute to inequitable access to high-quality teachers in one school district. “Identifying Root Causes” is one of the seven stages detailed in our new guide, Achieving Equitable Access to Strong Teachers: A Guide for District Leaders, which shares lessons learned from…

  • Putting Student Success Into Practice in Higher Ed

    May 25, 2016 by

    Today, we're releasing a new guide for college and university leaders that shows how four leading institutions are using data to improve outcomes among low-income and underrepresented minority (URM) students. Titled Using Data to Improve Student Outcomes, the guide includes practices and lessons learned from Florida State University…