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Inequality, Racial disparity, Minorities -- Education -- Oregon -- Portland


This research seeks to answer an emerging question in public school debates: whether race is just a proxy for income when it comes to disparities in educational outcomes among Oregon’s K-12 students. This research set out to respond to this question, and draws from public school data records to answer the question. We investigated student test scores across three different environments: elementary schools, middle schools and high schools. We also investigated student graduation rates from high school. The pattern of findings is absolutely clear: regardless of the site or type of disparities, when we compare how low-income students fare, all outcomes for students of color are weaker than that of White students. Similarly, when we compare outcomes for higher-income students, all outcomes of students of color are weaker than that of White students. We conclude that educators must address elements of racism across their institutions to ensure that race-related disparities are comprehensively addressed. Phase 2 of this research will investigate these same questions for specific school districts in Oregon.

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