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Closing Illinois' Achievement GAP: Lessons from the "Golden Spike" High Poverty High Performing Schools.

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The Achievement Gap is the single most critical issue in Illinois education. This study graphically illustrates the difference in academic performance between low-income children and their peers, between minority children and their classmates, and between those schools that serve a majority of children from low-income families and those that serve a more advantaged population. Using a framework of a decade of research from sociologists, educators and economists, the paper develops hypotheses for studying the Golden Spike schools, 59 schools in 44 school districts that have an established record of closing the Achievement Gap. The quantitative and qualitative analyses indicate that the Golden Spike schools have distinct commonalities in leadership, literacy, personnel, community engagement, and other characteristics. The study closes with policy recommendations and critical considerations for state level policy makers that will make possible the replication of successful programs, practices, and services of the Golden Spike schools. (Contains 1 map, 15 figures, and 44 references.) (Author/SLD)

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Author:McGee, Glenn W.
Publication:ERIC: Reports
Date:Apr 1, 2003
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