Hello Richard let me start by introducing myself, I am W. D. (Bill) Hamm. Your question is are their other reasons for the achievment gap and the answer is absolutely, but institutional Racism and it's undermining of families of color is by far the largest. Their is also the socio/economic element that parralels the chemical addiction of lower income children as well. Any factor that undermines family undermines education proficiency. The switch from "Student Based Education" to the "School to Work", "Outcome Based", "Minnimun Competency" model has also very negatively affected education. This is very apparent at the College level where remedial courses are now the norm to make of for the failures of the present K-12 model. In 1972 before these changes there were no remedial classes in our Colleges and we were extremely offended if grad rates fell below 75%. You need to further understand that their was much greater local input into and local control of our school districts then as well. Many of us trace the roots of this downhill slide to the organization of the teachers unions in 1964 and 65, a contraversial opinion indeed. Hope that helps.
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