Education Trust News

Increasing College-Going and Graduation Rates for Low-Income Students

WASHINGTON (January 16, 2014) – On their own, universities can, through sustained efforts, radically reshape success rates for low-income students and students of color without greater selectivity in admissions, according to two reports released today by The Education Trust. These reports come as the Obama administration calls for institutions of higher education to improve their college-going and completion rates among low-income and minority students.

Click here for a slideshow of eight universities that have markedly improved graduation rates over a sustained period of time.


Ed Trust Welcomes Ashley Griffin as Senior Research Associate

WASHINGTON (January 7, 2014) — The Education Trust is proud to welcome Ashley Griffin as its Senior Research Associate. Ashley comes to Ed Trust with many years of education research experience, most recently at the Department of Defense Education Activity where she was a research and evaluation analyst.

Previously, Ashley was director of research and evaluation at the Capstone Institute at Howard University. There she pursued research examining the instructional practices of urban elementary and secondary school teachers and the instructional preferences of students. In collaboration with Howard’s engineering department, Ashley also conducted extensive work in STEM education, writing and managing a grant from the National Science Foundation to study the persistence of African American male engineering students at historically black colleges and universities.

TUDA Data Show Cause for Concern — and for Hope

Our analysis of the Trial Urban District Assessment (TUDA) results, which includes 21 districts nationwide, shows that even for similar groups of students, there’s wide variation in student performance across districts.

Low-income, African American eighth-graders in Boston, for example, are outperforming those in Detroit by nearly 35 points in math. The difference in fourth-grade math performance between low-income students in Charlotte and Detroit is nearly as large.

This Year … Catalyze School Change

For over a decade, Ed Trust artist-in-residence Brooke Haycock’s performances have sparked conversation and action in schools and communities across the country. If you're looking for something evidence-backed and a little apart from the ordinary to spark honest, necessary conversations, build urgency, and remind people why their work is so important, an Ed Trust docudrama may be just the catalyst you've been seeking.

U.S. Performance on International Tests Stalls; Large Achievement Gaps Remain

WASHINGTON (December 4, 2013) — The latest results of the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) show that U.S. students’ performance on international tests has stagnated, while other industrialized nations have overtaken the U.S. in reading, math, and science literacy.

Testimony to the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Education and the Workforce Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Training

Michael Dannenberg, director of higher education and education finance policy at the Education Trust, testified about the importance of keeping the Pell Grant program strong for current and future generations of students before the House Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Training. The Pell Grant program helps makes college accessible for millions of hardworking students despite skyrocketing college costs and policies that shift financial aid away from families that need it most. More low-income students going to college is good for our economy and they are choosing schools where they are more likely succeed. Read the full testimony here.

Higher Education Experts Call for Tax Reforms to Improve College Affordability, Access, and Completion

WASHINGTON (November 21, 2013)—Today, a consortium of higher education experts called on Congress to reform tax-based student aid to ensure it reaches the low- and modest-income families who most need it to access college.  With nearly $34 billion spent each year, this form of aid is more common than even Pell Grants, but action is needed to maximize its impact on college access and completion. 

Groups Tell Texas State Board of Education: Hold Firm on Rigorous Math for All Students

WASHINGTON (November 19, 2013) — The Education Trust, League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), and National Council of the La Raza (NCLR) issued the following statement regarding the Texas State Board of Education’s proposed rules for high school graduation requirements.

“Texas leaders have long recognized the need for all high school graduates to have the knowledge and skills necessary for college and the careers that drive the state’s economy and pay a family-supporting wage. Texas students have risen to these high expectations; every year, more students from all backgrounds graduate from high school ready for college and the workplace.

The Texas State Board of Education should continue on this path by requiring that students complete Algebra II to earn any of the five diploma endorsements created by H.B. 5.

Message to The U.S. Department of Education: Stop Walking Away From Your Responsibilities to Our Nation's Neediest Students

WASHINGTON (November 14, 2013) — Kati Haycock, president of The Education Trust,  issued the following statement regarding the U.S. Department of Education’s guidelines released today, which allow states to renew their No Child Left Behind (NCLB) waivers using an oversimplified process that does not take into consideration performance for all groups of students or fair access to highly effective teachers.

Statement and Analysis From The Education Trust on the 2013 NAEP Reading and Mathematics Results

WASHINGTON (November 7, 2013) — Performance for the nation’s fourth and eighth-grade students in reading and mathematics has inched up since 2011, according to data released today from the 2013 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP).

This continues a decade-long trend of improvement, and today, performance for most groups of students is as high as it has ever been. This progress for students as a whole is coupled with some meaningful gap-closing. In eighth grade, for example, the gap separating Latino students from their white peers in math has narrowed by six points since 2003. For reading, it’s narrowed by seven points.