On February 19, 2013, the Equity and Excellence Commission released its report, For Each and Every Child: A Strategy for Education Equity and Excellence, that highlights achievement gaps among students in the US education system. The commission was tasked with providing “advice to the secretary of the US Department of Education on the disparities in meaningful educational opportunities that give rise to the achievement gap, with a focus on systems of finance, and to recommend ways in which federal policies could address such disparities.” Eric Hanushek, the Paul and Jean Hanna Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution and a member of the Koret Task Force on K–12 Education, served on that panel with twenty-six other members with backgrounds in education, civil rights, government, business, and more.
In an interview with NPR’s Morning Edition, Hanushek said, “Performance of our students has been roughly flat for forty years, and that has huge consequences.” Indeed, the commission highlighted twin gaps currently facing the United States: “US students fall far behind students in many other developed countries, and minorities and disadvantaged students fall far behind more advanced students.” The commission argued that these issues must be dealt with immediately for purely economic reasons, as improving the performance of US students would keep the economy viable going forward. Summarizing the commission’s findings, Hanushek said, “The clear and unanimous conclusion of the commission is that resources for schools must be sufficient, equitably distributed, and effectively used. We cannot look separately at any of these elements.”
Click here to read a Huffington Post story on the report.