Critical Choices in Post-Recession California: Investing in the Educational and Career Success of Immigrant Youth

Education and Literacy;Immigration

Critical Choices in Post-Recession California: Investing in the Educational and Career Success of Immigrant Youth

California's success in integrating immigrant youth is critical, not just to the state but the nation. Sheer numbers demonstrate this significance. The state is home to one-quarter of the nation's immigrants, and as of 2012, more than half of young adults in California ages 16 to 26 were first- or second-generation immigrants (compared to one-quarter of youth nationwide). California educates more than one-third of U.S. students designated as English Language Learners (ELLs).

This report examines the educational experiences and outcomes of first- and second-generation immigrant youth ages 16 to 26 across California's educational institutions, encompassing secondary schools, adult education, and postsecondary education. ELLs are a central focus of the analysis at all levels, as this group has unique educational needs. The findings draw from qualitative fieldwork -- including interviews with educators and community leaders in California -- and quantitative analyses of the most recent data from the U.S. Census Bureau and state education agencies.

Geographic Focus: North America-United States (Western)-California

Separate & Unequal: How Higher Education Reinforces the Intergenerational Reproduction of White Racial Privilege

Education and Literacy;Race and Ethnicity

Separate & Unequal: How Higher Education Reinforces the Intergenerational Reproduction of White Racial Privilege

Clearly class is a powerful cross-cutting factor in explaining postsecondary differences among all students. Yet, controlling for income, race matters: taken together, lower-income AfricanAmerican and Hispanic students just don't do as well as lower-income whites. We find that white students (45%) in the lower half of the family income distribution drop out of college much less frequently than African Americans (55%) and Hispanics (59%).

These lower-income whites get Bachelor's degrees at nearly twice the rate of African Americans and Hispanics and obtain many fewer sub-baccalaureate degrees. In particular, African-American students get substantially more certificates.

Class and race overlap and are most virulent in combination. Along with many other researchers, we find that the reason for persistent racial inequality begins with the fact that African Americans and Hispanics seem to face barriers not faced by whites.

Unequal educational and career outcomes for economically disadvantaged whites can be explained with variables like family income, parental education, and peer expectations. These same variables do not fullyexplain African American and Hispanic educational and economic outcomes. Earlier research shows income effects are more fully explained by observable things, like peer group and tutoring, while differences by race are not so easy to pin down. The preponderance of evidence supports the premise that the disadvantages of race and income must be considered separately in most cases. Yes, differences in readiness and income explain differences in academic and life outcomes; but, independently, so do race and ethnicity.

Geographic Focus: North America-United States

Reclaiming the American Dream: Community Colleges and the Nation�s Future

Education and Literacy

Reclaiming the American Dream: Community Colleges and the Nation�s Future

The American Dream is imperiled. Upward mobility, the contract between one generation of Americans and the next, is under siege. Once unchallenged, this nation's primacy in college graduation rates has already been overtaken by committed competitors from abroad. The nation can take great pride in what America's community colleges have accomplished, but the message of this Commission is simple and direct: If community colleges are to contribute powerfully to meeting the needs of 21st-century students and the 21st-century economy, education leaders must reimagine what these institutions are -- and are capable of becoming.

In a rapidly changing America and a drastically reshaped world, the ground beneath the nation's feet has shifted so dramatically that community colleges need to reimagine their roles and the ways they do their work. The premise of this Commission can be summarized in three sentences: The American Dream is at risk. Because a highly educated population is fundamental to economic growth and a vibrant democracy, community colleges can help reclaim that dream. But stepping up to this challenge will require dramatic redesign of these institutions, their mission, and, most critically, their students' educational experiences.

Geographic Focus: North America-United States

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