In the News

Media mentions of SEDA's work

June 29, 2020

A decade of research on the rich-poor divide in education

"Sociologists like Sean Reardon at Stanford University and Ann Owens at the University of Southern California have built a body of evidence that school segregation by income is what’s really getting worse in America, not school segregation by race."

Read more at The Hechinger Report

June 25, 2020

Chamber of Commerce report breaks down education, other opportunity gaps by the numbers

"A study ​released last year by The Educational Opportunity Project at Stanford University concluded — after an examination of tests taken by white, Black and Hispanic students nationwide — that poverty is the common factor impacting U.S. achievement gaps."

Read more at Education Dive

June 23, 2020

Will the 2021 Nation's Report Card Be Another Coronavirus Casualty?

"Sean Reardon, professor of poverty and inequality in education at Stanford University, uses NAEP data to track patterns of opportunity and achievement gaps across states. Reardon said he would be concerned about differences in test administrations and different response rates of students in different states, but said without NAEP, even states that are able to administer their own tests next year will not be able to compare their policies and outcomes to those in other states."

Read more at Education Week

June 16, 2020

School Districts’ Remote-Learning Plans May Widen Student Achievement Gap

"The Covid-19 pandemic is arguably the largest disruption America’s K–12 education system has ever faced. For students, this disruption—and the differences in districts’ response to it—will harm academic achievement and likely exacerbate longstanding achievement gaps ... To divide districts by student achievement, I used data from the Educational Opportunity Project at the Stanford Education Data Archive, which offer comparable measures of student math and reading achievement based on state tests from school years 2009 to 2016."

Read more at Education Next

April 15, 2020

Achievement Gaps and Racial Disparities in Special Education

"How might U.S. school districts be more appropriately monitored for potential bias in their disability identification practices? We recently examined this by merging and then analyzing three national datasets [including] ... the Stanford Education Data Archive."

Read more at Psychology Today

February 14, 2020

Desegregation in Greenville schools: Achievement gap slowly closing, but inequities persist

"Sean Reardon, a researcher at Stanford University, has been studying the correlation between poverty and achievement gaps for years. Reardon and a team of researchers published a study in September that says the achievement gap between minority and white students comes down to achievement gaps between students who live in poverty and those who don't."

Read more at Greenville News

February 10, 2020

Test scores, learning rates tell different student achievement stories in Michigan’s poorest schools

"A study done by researchers at Stanford University, shows the tired tale of poor students scoring lower on standardized tests is still alive in Michigan’s public schools. However, the results also show that some of these poorer districts are improving at rates equal to or higher than more affluent districts. "

Read more at Michigan Advance

February 7, 2020

Mind the achievement gap: California’s disparities in education, explained

"A recent study by Stanford researchers found student achievement gaps are mainly driven by school poverty — not a school’s racial composition. 'Racial segregation appears to be harmful because it concentrates minority students in high-poverty schools, which are, on average, less effective than lower-poverty schools,' the study found."

Read more at CalMatters

February 6, 2020

How Unequal Discipline Hurts Black Students

Students of color are suspended at disproportionately higher rates than white students and, on average, perform more poorly on standardized tests. But no peer-reviewed nationwide research has documented a link between the two disparities—until now.

Read more at Greater Good Magazine (UC Berkeley)

January 7, 2020

Across the U.S., There Are Stark Differences in Opportunity for Students. Accessible Data Tools Can Illuminate These Gaps

"The differences between Chatham and Commerce come into sharp relief with new data tools such the Opportunity Explorer by the Education Opportunity Project at Stanford University. This tool allows users to search for all schools in the nation and compare them using the same metrics."

Read more at The 74 Million

January 6, 2020

Salem kids learn more than U.S. average, national Stanford study finds

A first-ever study looking at student test scores across the U.S. found Salem-Keizer students do worse than the average American kid on reading and math tests. Though they improve more year over year, it's not enough to close the gap.

Read more at Salem Reporter

November 22, 2019

In Mississippi, an Unlikely Model for School Desegregation

The community of Clinton made a bold move in 1971 with its public schools. Nearly 50 years later, the approach is being hailed by educators and researchers alike.

Read more at The Wall Street Journal

October 17, 2019

Can Big Data Help Us Solve Inequality In Education?

"A big data project led by Stanford University's Sean Reardon aims to crack the code on our nation’s stubborn student achievement gaps by mapping race, ethnicity, poverty and academic test scores."

Read more at KALW

October 4, 2019

To Shrink Achievement Gap, Integrate School Districts

"Does segregation still matter? When it comes to educating our nation’s school children, the answer is yes, according to research published last week by the Stanford University Center for Education Policy Analysis."

Read more at The Wall Street Journal

September 26, 2019

What are the best schools near you? A new tool from Stanford has the most accurate answer

"A decade ago Sean Reardon, a professor at Stanford, embarked on a slightly insane project to compile and standardize test scores from every public school in the US. Having that data, he and his colleagues thought, would reveal the real gaps in achievement between rich and poor, black and white, boys and girls, and other groups."

Read more at Quartz

September 24, 2019

U.S. minority students concentrated in high-poverty schools: study

"Segregation in U.S. public education has concentrated black and Hispanic children into high-poverty schools with few resources, leading to an achievement gap between minority and white students, a nationwide study showed on Tuesday."

Read more at Reuters

September 23, 2019

The Educational Opportunity Project (Stanford Video)

"The Educational Opportunity Project at Stanford University is an initiative directed by Sean Reardon aimed at supporting efforts to reduce educational disparities throughout the United States."

Read more at Youtube

September 23, 2019

Achievement gaps in schools driven by poverty, study finds

"High concentrations of poverty, not racial segregation, entirely account for the racial achievement gap in U.S. schools, a new study finds."

Read more at The Washington Post

September 23, 2019

First National Database of Academic Performance Launches

"A new interactive data tool from the Educational Opportunity Project at Stanford University will provide extraordinary access to information about academic performance across schools and districts throughout the United States."

Read more at Harvard Graduate School of Education

September 23, 2019

New Data Tool Rates 'Educational Opportunity' Offered in Nation's Schools, Districts

"An interactive data tool from the Educational Opportunity Project at Stanford University creates the first database that attempts to measure the performance of every elementary and middle school in the country."

Read more at Education Week

September 23, 2019

An analysis of achievement gaps in every school in America shows that poverty is the biggest hurdle

"A Stanford study finds that racial segregation matters because black and Hispanic students are concentrated in high poverty schools."

Read more at The Hechinger Report

September 23, 2019

Poverty levels in schools key determinant of achievement gaps, not racial or ethnic composition, study finds

"While racial and ethnic segregation in the nation’s schools is strongly correlated with gaps in academic achievement, the income level of students’ families in a school rather than its racial or ethnic composition account for those gaps, according to a new study."

Read more at EdSource

September 23, 2019

School poverty – not racial composition – limits educational opportunity, according to new research at Stanford

"Racial segregation leads to growing achievement gaps – but it does so entirely through differences in school poverty, according to new research from education Professor Sean Reardon, who is launching a new tool to help educators, parents and policymakers examine education trends by race and poverty level nationwide."

Read more at Stanford News

October 16, 2018

'You Are Still Black': Charlottesville's Racial Divide Hinders Students

"About a third of the 25 districts with the widest achievement disparities between white and black students are in or near college towns, according to a review of data compiled by researchers at Stanford University. Affluent families in university towns invest a large proportion of their resources in their children’s education, said Sean Reardon, a professor of education at Stanford."

Read more at The New York Times

August 6, 2018

School Policies and the Success of Advantaged and Disadvantaged Students

"Important recent work by Reardon and his collaborators shows that not only test scores but also racial test score gaps vary dramatically across American school districts. In this latter paper, Reardon and coauthors report that while racial/ethnic test score gaps average around 0.6 standard deviations across all school districts, in some districts the gaps are almost nonexistent while in others they exceed 1.2 standard deviations."

Read more at Education Next

April 17, 2018

New Chicago schools chief faces challenges despite major strides

"Chicago Public Schools, one of the largest school systems in the country, is reporting academic improvement in spite of past troubles. Now city leaders are looking to new CEO Janice Jackson to keep things moving forward. Sean Reardon: "The growth rate from third to eighth grade in Chicago is the fastest among the 100 large districts in the United States. It is number one."

Read more at PBS News Hour

January 16, 2018

Stanford professor finds income not the main determinant of public school effectiveness

"A study by Sean F. Reardon, professor of poverty and inequality in education at the Graduate School of Education, found that socioeconomic status in U.S. public school districts only weakly correlated with growth in students’ average test scores over time. Reardon told Business Insider that students’ rate of test score improvement over time is a better measure of a given school’s effectiveness."

Read more at Stanford Daily

January 8, 2018

A Stanford study of 45 million students found something startling about which kids succeed

"There are many relatively high-poverty school districts where students appear to be learning at a faster rate than kids in other, less poor districts," Reardon said in a statement. "Poverty clearly does not determine the quality of a school system."

Read more at Business Insider

December 5, 2017

How Effective Is Your School District? A New Measure Shows Where Students Learn the Most

"In the Chicago Public Schools system, enrollment has been declining, the budget is seldom enough, and three in four children come from low-income homes, a profile that would seemingly consign the district to low expectations. But students here appear to be learning faster than those in almost every other school system in the country, according to new data from researchers at Stanford."

Read more at The New York Times

December 5, 2017

Stanford University study: Rochester schools last in U.S. in growth

"A novel, large-scale study from Stanford University shows Rochester-area primary schools are dead last among the 200 largest cities in the country for academic growth. The study, from Stanford's Center for Education Policy Analysis, examines standardized test score results for all Rochester children and reports the apparent progress by cohort year — that is, how much more 2017 eighth-graders know compared to 2016 seventh-graders."

Read more at Rochester Democrat and Chronicle

December 5, 2017

Students' early test scores do not predict academic growth over time, Stanford research finds

"There are many relatively high-poverty school districts where students appear to be learning at a faster rate than kids in other, less poor districts,” said Reardon, who holds an endowed professorship in Poverty and Inequality in Education. “Poverty clearly does not determine the quality of a school system."

Read more at Stanford Report

July 24, 2017

Some Schools Much Better Than Others at Closing Achievement Gaps Between Their Advantaged and Disadvantaged Students

"Important new work by Reardon and his collaborators shows that not only test scores but also racial test score gaps vary dramatically across American school districts. In this latter paper, Reardon and coauthors report that while racial/ethnic test score gaps average around 0.6 standard deviations across all school districts, in some districts the gaps are almost nonexistent while in others they exceed 1.2 standard deviations"

Read more at Education Next

July 7, 2017

Examining the achievement gap between white and black students in Alabama

"Stanford's Educational Opportunity Monitoring Project has dug deeply into available data, searching for what other factors beyond poverty might be influencing the black-white achievement gap. Researcher Sean Reardon studied the multiple factors that contribute to the gap, using more than 200 million test scores from schools and districts across the country. Reardon and his fellow researchers wanted to see which factors are most closely correlated with the achievement gap. They looked at two sets of factors that account for about three-fourths of the gap."


February 9, 2017

Integration Works. Can It Survive the Trump Era?

"The strongest correlates of achievement gaps are local racial/ethnic differences in parental income, local average parental education levels, and patterns of racial/ethnic segregation, consistent with a theoretical model in which family socioeconomic factors affect educational opportunity partly though residential and school segregation patterns."

Read more at The New York Times

May 4, 2016

When it comes to student performance, study shows this Massachusetts town is a notch above

Sean Reardon, the author of the Stanford study—”The Geography of Racial/Ethnic Test Score Gaps”—noted that Lexington is among the richest communities in the nation. Just below Lexington on the chart are other wealthy Massachusetts suburbs—including Belmont, Boxborough, Carlisle, Concord, Newton, Shrewsbury, Sudbury and Wincester—all of which achieve more than three grades above the national average. "On average, school districts in Massachusetts, whether they’re poor or middle class or affluent, tend to do better than similar school districts around the country in terms of test scores,” he said.


May 4, 2016

Why Is There A Huge Academic-Achievement Gap Between White Students And Their Peers Of Color?

We may be living at a time when education should be readily available for everyone, but knowledge still appears to be hard to come by. A new research suggests that black and Latino students are still a few grade levels behind their white classmates.

Stanford University conducted an educational study on the test scores of around 40 million US students and discovered that students of color had lower scores than white students. In addition to that, the academic-achievement gap between white and colored students was even greater in wealthy university towns like Evanston in Illinois and Berkeley in California.

Read more at Parent Herald

April 29, 2016

Money, Race and Success: How Your School District Compares

"Mr. Reardon said the analysis should not be used to rank districts or schools. Test scores reflect not just the quality of schools or their teachers, but all kinds of other factors in children’s lives, including their home environment; whether they attended a good preschool; traumas they have experienced; and whether their parents read to them at night or hire tutors."

Read more at The New York Times