Equity and Equality

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Equity and Equality Jaime Matta Concordia Online Community of Learners EDGR 595 Karen Billette February 27, 2012 Educational equity refers to equal access, opportunities, and expectations in education for all persons, irrespective of their backgrounds or status. As a democratic nation, the United States offers a system of "universal" and free public education as a primary mechanism for providing equal educational access and opportunities to all persons, for preparing its people for civic participation in society, and for the socialization of immigrants. The basic premise of public schooling in our school district is that students at all grade levels are entitled to equal learning opportunities irrespective of advantages,…show more content…
Because school financing is largely dependent on local property taxes, plaintiffs successfully argued that children in school districts with low assessable property values receive a lower-quality education than that available to children in wealthier districts. Observers document that larger classes, fewer certified or qualified teachers, rundown physical plants, low teacher pay, and limited or out-of-date teaching materials are found more often in schools located in poorer areas. The 1980s standards movement in the United States focused educators, policymakers, and the courts on equality of educational outcomes and on "achievement gaps" among different socioeconomic, ethnic, gender, and disability groups, as measured on standardized achievement and ability tests. The bipartisan No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act of 2001 followed 2 decades of standards-based reforms in U.S. education. NCLB was passed on the premise that higher standards alone had not resulted in higher levels of achievement, and achievement gaps still persisted in various ethnic and socioeconomic subgroups. Comprehensive visions of educational equity in the United States now advocate broadening resource allocations to achieve student outcomes beyond raising test scores. Recent proposals aim to equalize access of families to an array of health, educational, and supplemental services, both in and out of school, to improve students' cognitive and noncognitive outcomes more comprehensively.
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