Published In

Youth & Society

Document Type


Publication Date



Education -- Research -- Methodology


Schools’ overt or explicit practices are a dominant lens through which education researchers and policymakers attempt to understand how schools are racially inequitable. Yet, Lewis and Diamond argue that contemporary racial inequalities are largely sustained through implicit factors, like institutional practices and structural inequalities. Ray’s framework on racialized organizations similarly outlines how our racialized sociopolitical structure becomes embedded in organizations, legitimating and perpetuating the racialized hierarchy. We apply illustrative cluster analysis techniques to rich data on schools, teachers, and students from the nationally representative High School Longitudinal Study of 2009 to find that structural inequities (e.g., student body, sector, average achievement) appear to be most salient in delineating the racialization of US high schools, whereas the characteristics of schools and teachers that are typically emphasized for closing racial inequities in educational outcomes (e.g., teacher qualifications, courses offered, stratification practices) are not salient differentiators across schools.


Copyright © 2023 by SAGE Publications


This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Youth & Society. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Youth & Society.



Persistent Identifier

Included in

Sociology Commons