Study Finds Wealth More Advantageous Than Smarts

May 16, 2019

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Title: Born to Win, Schooled to Lose

Authors: Anthony P. Carnevale, Megan L. Fasules, Michael C. Quinn, and Kathryn Peltier Campbell

Source: Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce

A recent report by the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce examines differences in opportunity of achieving the American Dream by analyzing the academic and financial status of people at various points from kindergarten to early adulthood. The main findings reveal that socioeconomic status (SES) is a greater indicator of future success than high academic achievement.

Kindergartners from affluent backgrounds who have test scores in the bottom half of academic achievement have a seven in 10 chance of reaching high SES by age 25, while kindergartners from low-income backgrounds who have test scores in the upper half of academic achievement had only a three in 10 chance of reaching high SES by age 25.

Additional analysis was done to look at racial and ethnic differences. Recommendations from the report include more robust academic interventions during PK-12 education, as well as expanded high school counseling services.

Click here to read the full report.

—Ben Schaap

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