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Closing the Achievement Gap: A Vision for Changing Beliefs and Practices


reviewed by Dale Whittington 2004

coverTitle: Closing the Achievement Gap: A Vision for Changing Beliefs and Practices
Author(s): Belinda Williams (Editor)
Publisher: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, Alexandria, VA
ISBN: 0871208385, Pages: , Year: 2003
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This book’s first edition was commissioned to provide a theoretical and practical knowledge base to help overcome obstacles to urban academic performance. (Williams, 1996)  Designed to move beyond city borders, this second edition addresses the question, “What else do we need to know and do to close the achievement gaps among groups?”(p. 1).   Belinda Williams, the book’s editor, poses this question in the introduction.  The introduction and the first chapter preview how authors of the book’s nine chapters answer this question, identify the book’s intended audiences, who range from educators to legislators, and establish a case for the book.  Williams opens with a powerful set of statistics depicting achievement gaps and discusses the gaps’ complexity.  Calling educational reform efforts “superficial,” “fragmented,” and “inadequate,” she decries a tendency toward one-size-fits-all, simplistic thinking. There are unique reasons for achievement gaps, she warns, so readers should not confuse the goal of raising the overall achievement level with closing achievement gaps between groups. She discusses obstacles to closing gaps and suggests varied, complex... (preview truncated at 150 words.)


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 106 Number 12, 2004, p. 2342-2345
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 11319, Date Accessed: 12/16/2017 5:32:13 PM

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About the Author
  • Dale Whittington
    Shaker Heights City School District
    E-mail Author
    DALE WHITTINGTON is Director of Research and Evaluation in the Shaker Heights (Ohio) City School District. In addition to managing the district's testing program, she conducts a variety of studies on the schools, students, and programs. She was previously Associate Professor in the Department of Education and Allied Studies at John Carroll University, where she taught courses on research methods, testing, and educational psychology. Her most recent article, on the SAT and the achievement gap, appeared in Educational Policy Analysis Archives in April 2004.
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