Examining the In School and Out of School Factors of African American Students Contributing to the Academic Achievement Gap

In this review, the causes of the academic achievement gap between African American and white students will be examined. It will review recent research on the status of African American school achievement since the implementation of No Child Left Behind (NCLB) in 2001. It will look at various factors that have been identified as the reason for the continuation of low academic achievement among African American students. It will focus on the out of school and in school factors that have been found to have a relationship to the perception of the gap. Findings suggest that both factors play a role and that the school needs to take more responsibility in working with African American families and providing a welcoming school climate. Additional research is needed to investigate whether the underperformance of African American students is related to stereotypes about the ability of African American students.

Sarah Marie Goldman
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