Rachel Leventhal-Weiner Mobility iForum 5-21-15

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CONNECTICUT

VOICES FOR CHILDREN

Unequal Schools: How Connecticut’s Segregation Limits Access to Educational Resources May 21, 2015

Rachel Leventhal-Weiner, PhD | Education Policy Fellow Kenneth Feder | Policy Analyst Sarah Iverson | Policy Fellow www.ctvoices.org


Introducing Connecticut Voices for Children Mission All Connecticut children have the opportunity to achieve their full potential. Methods Research, Data, and Fiscal Analysis Public Policy Advocacy and Public Education Core Issues Healthy Child Development Universal High-Quality Education Equity and Opportunity Strategic Investment www.ctvoices.org 2


Research Questions

Does residential segregation result in disparities in access to small class sizes (particularly in kindergarten) or experienced teachers?

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Schools with Largest Class Sizes Clustered in High Poverty Towns

Sixty-one percent of schools with the largest kindergarten classes were located in the 10 towns with the highest child poverty rates. www.ctvoices.org 4


Schools with Least Experienced Teachers Clustered in High Poverty Towns

Forty-seven percent of all public schools with the least experienced teachers were located in the ten towns with the highest child poverty rates. www.ctvoices.org 5


Research Questions

How can we explain why residential segregation limits access to school resources?

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State Education Aid Cannot Overcome Property Wealth Gap Connecticut's Low-Poverty School Districts Outspend HighPoverty Districts 6,800

6,661

Average Per-Pupil Spending

6,600

6,514 6,422

6,400 6,200 6,000 5,839 5,800 5,600 5,400 Low-­‐poverty districts

Low-­‐middle poverty districts

High-­‐middle poverty districts

High-­‐poverty districts

Connecticut school districts serving the fewest students in poverty outspend districts serving the most students in poverty by over $1,200 per-pupil. Our rich-poor spending gap is worse than all but 9 other states. www.ctvoices.org 7


Schools with Fewer Resources Clustered in Towns with Least Wealth

Schools with the largest kindergarten classes or the least experienced teachers, or both, appear to be disproportionately concentrated in towns with the lowest property value. www.ctvoices.org 8


Schools with Greater Resources in Towns with Less Affordable Housing

Schools with the largest kindergarten classes appear to be disproportionately concentrated in towns with a large percentage of affordable housing stock. www.ctvoices.org 9


Recommendations 1. Investment: Connecticut must improve the current system of education funding to ensure every child has access to a high quality and substantially equal education. 2. Transparency: Connecticut and its schools should increase transparency in how education money is spent, to ensure dollars are invested in evidence-based resources. 3. Family Mobility: Connecticut should investigate barriers to racial and socioeconomic residential integration, and take action to alleviate any barriers identified.

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Questions?

Kenneth Feder Policy Analyst Connecticut Voices for Children kfeder@ctvoices.org 203.498.4240 x117

Sarah Iverson Policy Fellow Connecticut Voices for Children siverson@ctvoices.org 203.498.4240 x107

Rachel Leventhal-Weiner, PhD Education Policy Fellow Connecticut Voices for Children rglweiner@ctvoices.org 203.498.4240 x120

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