The Opportunity Equation: How Citizen Teachers Are Combating the Achievement Gap in America’s Schools

Eric Schwarz. Beacon, $26.95 (256p) ISBN 978-0-8070-3372-2
Both a practical policy primer and a memoir, Schwarz persuasively demonstrates that the so-called educational achievement gap is rooted in opportunity and resources—not willingness or ability—and proposes accessible solutions to close the gap. With a keen and forthright eye, he employs his own experience as a child born into privilege to establish that if the advantages lavished on him were available to children from all points on the economic spectrum, achievement and prospects for future accomplishments would also be weighted equally. He founded Citizen Schools in 1995 to provide volunteer tutoring and enrichment classes to low-performing public schools in the Boston area. With a growing number of partnerships with public schools, the organization continues to evolve, providing volunteer teachers and extended learning time for resource-strapped schools in several states. Combining data-rich statistics with frequently funny and animated accounts of his work with Citizen Schools, including a bracing candor about mistakes and learning on the fly, Schwarz offers an inspiring chronicle of scholarly triumphs and generous citizen activism, as well as a constructive blueprint for boosting achievement without abandoning public education. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 06/02/2014
Release date: 09/02/2014
Genre: Nonfiction
Ebook - 166 pages - 978-0-8070-3373-9
Paperback - 248 pages - 978-0-8070-7345-2
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