ERIC Number: EJ831968
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006-Jul
Reference Count: 1
Closing the Diversity Gap in Advanced Placement Course Enrollment
VanSciver, James H.
Multicultural Perspectives, v8 n3 p56-58 Jul 2006
Although the myth of public education as the "great equalizer" is alive and well in the minds of many, the reality is that the notion of public schools as the savior of the less fortunate is fundamentally compromised when institutional decision making does more to suppress low-income and minority students through low expectations demonstrated by the scheduling process than to advance their academic opportunities. To be blunt about this issue, the institutional memory remains the predominant barrier to opening up advanced placement courses to all students. However, it is not the only one. There are two prisms through which this enigma may be explored. The first is by understanding the factors impacting why and how students make decisions and the second is how decisions are made for them. This argument is based on individual interviews with 77 low-income and minority students in grades 6 through 10 enrolled at Seaford School District during the 2002-2003 school year who are now participants in the school system's Advanced Placement Incentive Program. The study revealed that students underschedule themselves to deliver higher grades to their parents. In this article, the author explains how behavior will set these students up for failure and will deny most of them a college degree. The author also describes how Seaford School District educators addressed this issue.
Descriptors: Advanced Placement Programs, Low Income Groups, School Districts, Minority Groups, Public Education, Achievement Gap, Cultural Differences, Enrollment, High School Students, Public Schools, Interviews, Middle School Students, Algebra
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site: http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: High Schools; Middle Schools
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Delaware
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Delaware Student Testing Program