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ERIC Number: ED612796
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2021-Jan
Pages: 15
Abstractor: ERIC
Can Policy Interventions Reduce Inequality? Looking beyond Test Scores for Evidence
Murnane, Richard J.
William T. Grant Foundation
Among the many troubling legacies of centuries of slavery and discrimination in the United States are extraordinary race-based inequalities in life chances. Black children grow up in families with much lower income and wealth, on average, than White children. They are more likely than White children to live in neighborhoods of concentrated poverty and to attend underfunded schools in which their classmates are also from low-income families. One consequence of these inequalities is that Black children are less likely than White children to acquire the skills, educational credentials, and networks that lead to well-paying jobs. Another is that the inequalities that hampered their lives are passed on to their children (Chetty et al., 2020). In this essay, Richard J. Murnane uses evidence from three studies to show that the nation has learned a lot about what it takes to reduce race-based inequalities. He also points out that the primary public policy strategies for reducing race-based inequalities and for measuring progress are inconsistent with the evidence from these recent studies.
William T. Grant Foundation. 570 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10022. Tel: 212-752-0071; Fax: 212-752-1398; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: William T. Grant Foundation
Identifiers - Location: North Carolina (Charlotte); Illinois (Chicago)
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A