August 2010 Archives

Education and wealth

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Eric tweeted about a thought provoking Washington Post column this morning. Here's my reaction that I emailed to a few co-workers and thought I'd share here:

Passed along from one of my teacher friends: Link

The article is rather thick and takes some concentration to get through, but it's quite interesting. It boils down to a grid of test scores for children based on their family wealth, crossed with the average wealth of the children at their school.

The finding is that while poor school vs. wealthy school generates a half of a standard deviation in test performance, and poor kid vs. wealthy kid also generates a half of a standard deviation difference, the poor kid in the poor school is 1.5 standard deviations from the wealthy kid at the wealthy school.

Of course, the application of the results is all up to one's point of view... but the moral of the story is to send your kids to a wealthy school, regardless of your own personal wealth.