Closing the Achievement Gap is made up of six articles. The first paper examines Cleveland's restructuring initiative in light of two theories on early adolescent development: person-in-environment theory and the focal theory of change. This is followed by a study that illustrates the difference in academic performance between low-income children and their peers, minority children and their classmates, and those schools that serve a majority of children from low-income families and those that serve a more advantaged population. The third article summarizes key findings of a study that examined the reform efforts of three large urban school districts and a portion of a fourth that had been successful in improving student achievement and reducing racial achievement gaps. It also discusses the implications for research and technical assistance. Next, survey data on 15,800 high school students from three urban school districts is used to investigate the impact of school-level support for higher educational attainment and school racial composition on students' actual educational aspirations. The final article explores whether reading books during summer vacation improves fall reading proficiency and whether access to books increases the volume of summer reading.
Volume 9 Number 2, 2004Contents: P. Poncelet, Metis Associates, Restructuring Schools in Cleveland for the Social, Emotional, and Intellectual Development of Early Adolescents. G.W. McGee, Closing the Achievement Gap: Lessons From Illinois' Golden Spike High-Poverty High-Performing Schools. J.C. Snipes, M.D. Casserly, Urban School Systems and Education Reform: Key Lessons From a Case Study of Large Urban School Systems. J.T. Yun, M. Kurlaender, School Racial Composition and Student Educational Aspirations: A Question of Equity in a Multiracial Society. J. Kim, Summer Reading and the Ethnic Achievement Gap. J.P. Van Haneghan, S.A. Pruet, H.J. Bamberger, Mathematics Reform in a Minority Community: Student Outcomes.