Low-Income, First-Gen, and Non-Traditional Students


July 21, 2017 – Here’s our weekly roundup of education news you may have missed. The digital divide and identifying gifted students present problems in K-12. In higher ed, articles discuss the unique challenges of today’s college students.

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Elementary & Secondary Education:

  • “Are smart students from poor families more likely to be overlooked for gifted or high-level math classes? The answer is a resounding yes,” writes NEA Today.
  • A new report from Brookings finds that even within the same school district, schools “differ substantially in terms of their advantaged-disadvantaged success gaps.”
  • Teachers may be underestimating how often their students require internet access to complete homework assignments. EdTech Magazine explains how this could exacerbate the homework gap for low-income students and in a related article, Education Week reports on how digital equity can help close the achievement gap.


Higher Education:

  • “No matter how often I reminded myself that my parents wanted me to go to college, I couldn’t shake the feeling that I was nonetheless experiencing things they never would,” writes first-generation student Christy Pham in The Seattle Times.
  • Having the SAT and the ACT administered universally at no cost to students would “reduce the administrative barriers to applying to college, help identify talented disadvantaged children, and increase the likelihood that they will attend a college that matches their skills.” Susan Dynarski explains the proposal in a column for The New York Times.


Cooke Foundation Highlights:

  • Using a Cooke Foundation Good Neighbor Grant, the College Now program is bringing local high school students to a college campus to earn credits in performing arts or STEM. Loudoun Now shares details about the summer program.
  • The Clarion-Ledger describes the goals of the Mississippi Public School Consortium for Educational Access, a recent recipient of our Rural Talent Initiative grants.
  • Cooke Scholar Cassandra Domingo tells the Binghamton Press & Sun-Bulletin that she almost didn’t apply for the Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship, and The Washington Times senior correspondent Deborah Simmons includes information about the foundation in her latest column.


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