The enduring impact of race: Understanding disparities in student disciplinary infractions and achievement
To what extent do persistent race gaps in educational outcomes stem from differences in the level of advantage that students bring to school or from differences in opportunities to succeed? In order to disentangle the component elements of race gaps in middle school achievement and disciplinary infractions, the authors use demographic methods that quantify the proportion of the race gap that is linked to the student, peer, and school composition of race groups. Using administrative school records from North Carolina, the authors find that (1) students' family and demographic characteristics are the most important explanatory factors; (2) the distribution of students across schools with differing racial composition, school sizes, teacher qualifications, and poverty levels also contributes to explaining the gaps; but (3) a substantial portion of each race gap remains unexplained by these compositional differences. © 2012 by Pacific Sociological Association.
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