Closing the Opportunity Gap

IDEAL: initiative on diversity, equity and learning
The Initiative on Diversity, Equity, and Learning (IDEAL) uses collaborations and strategic communication of research to assist policy makers, educators, the media, and the public in understanding research related to equity and racial diversity with the goal of advancing opportunities and school success for all students.
The Opportunity Gap - Book

Closing the
Opportunity Gap

What America Must Do to Give Every Child an Even Chance

Closing the Opportunity Gap brings together top experts who offer evidence-based essays that paint a powerful picture of denied opportunities. They also describe sensible, research-based policy approaches to enhance opportunities.

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Meet the authors & experts

  • Author

    W. Steven Barnett

  • Author

    Clive Belfield

  • Author

    Barnett Berry

  • Author

    Prudence L. Carter

  • Author

    Linda Darling-Hammond

  • Author

    Patricia Gándara

  • Author

    Harvey Kantor

  • Author

    Gloria Ladson-Billings

  • Author

    Cynthia Esposito Lamy

  • Author

    Henry M. Levin

  • Author

    Daniel J. Losen

  • Author

    Robert Lowe

  • Author

    Michele S. Moses

  • Author

    Gary Orfield

  • Author

    John Rogers

  • Author

    Richard Rothstein

  • Author

    Janelle Scott

  • Author

    Christopher H. Tienken

  • Author

    Karolyn Tyson

  • Author

    Amy Stuart Wells

  • Author

    Kevin G. Welner

  • Author

    Yong Zhao

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Policy Recommendations

Our authors and experts put together this list of policies to help policy makers and their staffs get started on closing the Opportunity Gap.

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Latest Press Release

On the 30th Anniversary of the Report “A Nation at Risk” New Book and Campaign on Closing the Opportunity Gap Announced in Remarks to the National Press Club (4/25)

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Success Stories

Here are several examples of how communities around the country are making progress closing the Opportunity Gap.

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Publisher's Toolkit

Access more information about “Opportunity Gap: What America Must Do to Give Every Child an Even Chance” published by Oxford University Press here.

What people are saying

Kris D. Gutiérrez

Inaugural Provost's Chair and Professor of Learning Sciences

University of Colorado Boulder
Schooling, at its best, is about creating new futures for our children. Closing the Opportunity Gap describes education as it is and provides a vision of education as it should be. The book provides a powerful critique of the educational and social policies and practices that exacerbate the widening economic disparity between rich and poor and the growing opportunity gap for too many of our nation's youth. The authors' analyses of educational inequity and their focus on opportunity to learn offer a much needed blueprint and a new social imagination about schooling in the U.S.

Jeannie Oakes

Director of Education and Scholarship

Ford Foundation
As policymakers and education leaders seek to pick up the pieces of a public education system tattered by No-Child-Left-Behind style reform, Carter and Welner's book brings clear-eyed analyses of failure and of future possibilities. In one highly readable volume, the nation's leading scholars provide evidence-based accounts of the root causes, everyday realities, and long-term consequences of the nation's weightiest educational problem-profound inequality in and out of school. And, most important, they offer comprehensive, insightful, and useful remedies. Those seeking new concepts and strategies for creating the public schools our diverse nation desperately needs and deserves need look no further than this astonishing book.