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ERIC Number: ED590205
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2018
Pages: 8
Abstractor: ERIC
The Opportunity Myth: What Students Can Show Us about How School Is Letting Them Down -- And How to Fix It. Executive Summary
How can so many students be graduating from high school unprepared to meet their goals for college and careers? Three years ago, TNTP set out to answer that question. Researchers suspected that they could gain a better understanding of students' daily experiences by observing those experiences in action, looking closely at the work students were doing, and most importantly, by asking students directly. Researchers hypothesized that a clearer picture of students' daily experiences could point the way toward changes to policy and practice that would bridge the gap between what students need and what they are getting every day in their classrooms. TNTP partnered with five diverse school systems, rural and urban, district and charter, to listen to students' views on their educational experiences and observe how those experiences played out, in real time, in their classrooms. While "student experiences" include many things within and outside school, TNTP chose to focus on a set of in-school elements that offered a window into what students were doing in their classes and how they perceived that time. Above all, TNTP wanted to understand students' aspirations for themselves, what kind of lives they wanted to lead, and how school was preparing them to live those lives--or letting them down. This Executive Summary discusses the following findings: (1) Students have big, clear plans; (2) Most students do what they are asked in school--but are still not ready to succeed after school; (3) Students spend most of their time in school without access to four key resources: grade-appropriate assignments, strong instruction, deep engagement, and teachers who hold high expectations; (4) Students of color, those from low-income families, English language learners, and students with mild to moderate disabilities have even less access to these resources than their peers; and (5) Greater access to the four resources can and does improve student achievement--"particularly" for students who start the school year behind. [For the full report, see ED590204.]
TNTP. 186 Joralemon Street Suite 300, Brooklyn, NY 11201. Tel: 718-233-2800; Fax: 718-643-9202; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Middle Schools; Secondary Education; Junior High Schools; High Schools; Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: TNTP
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A